News An Egyptian cobra.

The Pennsylvania Casino have denied claims that there may be snakes inside the building following posts on social media of a snake bite

NoViolet Bulawayo; Colm Toibin; Eleanor Catton

Man Booker Prize for Fiction: Six different nationalities on shortlist

The six authors shortlisted for this year’s Man Booker Prize for Fiction are all of different nationalities for the first time in the prestigious literary award’s history, with Zimbabwe making its debut in the shape of NoViolet Bulawayo.

Child protection expert: Don’t target Google to stop abuse

A government policy to tackle the growing problem of online child abuse is nonsensical and based on a fundamental misunderstanding of how paedophiles target their victims, according to the former head of Britain’s online child protection agency.

Three years in prison if your 'slanderous statements' are shared and RTed: China launches crackdown against online social media

China is stepping up its efforts to halt “online rumour-mongering” as part of a broader crackdown on social media, which Chinese people are using more and more to sidestep censorship of political debate.

Mesut Ozil poses with new Arsenal team-mate Lukas Podolski while on duty with the Germany. Podolski, currently out with a hamstring injury, was being examined by the national team doctor

Arsenal investigate academy coach tweet after alleged Mesut Ozil transfer bet

Coach Mark Arber posted on his Twitter account 'Lovely bit of 14-1 Mesut' causing the Gunners to launch an investigation into whether betting regulations have been breached

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Iain Duncan Smith puts ministerial career on the line after rolling out a barrel-full of jargon and clichés

It’s a sure sign that a minister is under pressure when the jargon level rises. As Iain Duncan Smith defended himself today the jargonometer surged into the red zone.

Roy Hodgson still targeting triumph at 2014 World Cup in Brazil

FA chairman Greg Dyke says winning in Rio is unrealistic

One of Oscar Murillo's lottery tickets

It could be you: £2,500 tickets available for the art world's new lottery

Alice Jones' Arts Diary

PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor

Comment: Gordon Taylor must be open about his own gambling issues for the sake of the PFA

He is realistic enough to know that he cannot simply hope to sweep this under the carpet

PFA chairman, Gordon Taylor

Comment: Gordon Taylor's position as PFA chief left untenable by ignoring own advice on betting

Betting is football's oldest friend and its oldest foe, its Jekyll and Hyde

Koreas agree to allow family reunions to resume after lull

North and South Korea agreed yesterday to allow reunions next month of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War, the first such meetings in three years and the latest conciliatory gesture from the North after a spring that saw it threaten Seoul with missile strikes and nuclear war.

Roberto Soldado opened the scoring on his Tottenham debut with a penalty in the 50th minute

Crystal Palace 0 Tottenham Hotspur 1 match report: Roberto Soldado and Co show there can still be life after Gareth Bale

£26m Spanish signing gets Andre Villas-Boas' side off to winning start

Sergey Kovalev took four rounds to clinch the WBO light heavyweight title from Nathan Cleverly

Boxing: Nathan Cleverly loses his WBO light heavyweight belt to Sergey Kovalev after fourth-round knockout in Cardiff

Welshman suffers first defeat of his career to unstoppable Kovaelv

The Secret Player, by Anonymous

First the Secret Olympian, then the Secret Footballer, and now the Secret Player; Anonymous is a busy author these days. The promise of such books is to give us explosive insider's dope, but what emerges here instead is a rather bleak view of the "beautiful game".

Romanian princess and husband charged over alleged Oregon cockfighting ring

Irina Walker, 60,  is the daughter of the last king of Romania

David Moyes greets Marouane Fellaini’s goal against Arsenal

Transfer news: David Moyes 'confident' of signing the Everton midfielder Marouane Fellaini after pulling out of Willian and Mesut Ozil chase

United will focus their transfer attempts on Belgian striker after Toffees boss Roberto Martinez admits they will look at suitable offers made for the Belgian

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Jeremy Paxman has admitted he is a 'one-nation Tory' and complained that Newsnight is made by idealistic '13-year-olds' who foolishly think they can 'change the world'.
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Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
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File: David Cameron offers a toast during a State Dinner in his honour March 14, 2012
voicesAnd nobody from Ukip said babies born to migrants should be classed as migrants, says Nigel Farage
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Avatar grossed $2.8bn at the box office after its release in 2009
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Happy in his hat: Pharrell Williams
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Arts and Entertainment
Stella Gibson is getting closer to catching her killer
tvReview: It's gripping edge-of-the-seat drama, so a curveball can be forgiven at such a late stage
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Brazilian football legend Pele pictured in 2011
peopleFans had feared the worst when it was announced the Brazil legand was in a 'special care' unit
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Brendan Rodgers seems more stressed than ever before as Liverpool manager
FOOTBALLI like Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game