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Gardeners have a habit of going on about their planting disasters, instead of celebrating their successes, says our green-fingered correspondent...

Mitchell Johnson of Australia bats during day one of the First Ashes Test match between Australia and England at The Gabba

Ashes 2013-14: The Aussie Angle - Mitchell Johnson provides one of the few positives

The late coming of Mitchell Johnson – with the bat – has papered over the thick cracks that still race in all directions through the Australian top order.

Spanish court indicts former Chinese President Hu Jintao over Tibet abuse

China has denounced a decision by a Spanish criminal court to indict the former Chinese President Hu Jintao for genocide as part of an investigation into whether his government committed abuses in Tibet.

Wrangling over the final wording of the latest landmark UN report on climate change has been so intense that last-minute discussions in Stockholm are set to run to the wire.

IPCC: Intense debate over wording of landmark UN climate change report set to run to the wire

Governments around the world are exercising extreme caution ahead of tomorrow's publication

George Abboudi, 22, has not been in contact since he spoke to his family in Leeds via Skype on 5 August

Sherpas comb Himalayan foothills for missing Briton George Abboudi

22-year-iold from Brighton began trekking alone in the region on 5 August but has not been heard of since

The trip: A new 15-day trip on the Golden Eagle Danube Express departs Budapest next October for Iran. It’s the first European train tour allowed in to the country. It will also visit Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey (mircorp.com).
Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle is to team up with Peep Show writers for a new Channel 4 drama

Danny Boyle to team up with Peep Show writers for Channel 4 police drama

Oscar-winning film director Danny Boyle is to team up with the writers of the comedy Peep Show to make a drama show for Channel 4 on the subject of modern British policing.

Tales from the Trees: Harewood Housewoods, Leeds

Stags stalk the sun-dappled grounds of this stately home

Venus, as seen by the Magellan spacecraft, 1991

Indian army mistakes planets for 'Chinese spy drones'

Mysterious 'aircraft' were sighted 329 times hovering over a lake on the border between the two countries

Royal Marines in Lympstone, Devon, above right, joined volunteers to clear the area of the rampant Himalayan balsam

Himalayan balsam: Call the Marines! It’s an alien plant invasion

Scientists, and now the military, are battling the spread of Himalayan balsam

Protests spread across northern India after security forces shoot Muslim demonstrators

Striking and marches take place across Jammu and Kashmir region after four killed and 40 wounded

Indian civilians get ready to load relief material for flood affected victims on a helicopter at a makeshift helipad at Joshimath, in northern Indian state of Uttarakhand

20 bodies found after India helicopter crashes on Uttarakhand floods rescue

Paramilitary soldiers have recovered 20 bodies from a steep hillside in northern India where a rescue helicopter crashed while attempting to evacuate people stranded in monsoon floods, the country's air force chief said.

Indian TV reporter Narayan Pargaien has faced criticism for sitting on a flood victim during a news item in order not to get wet.

Indian TV reporter defends decision to do live piece to camera from shoulders of recently rescued Uttarakhand flood victim

One could, if one were being utterly charitable to Narayan Pargaien, assume the Indian television reporter was trying to use his initiative.

An Indian man evacuvated due to rising waters searches the banks of the Yamuna River in New Delhi, where nearly 5,000 people have been evacuated

Stranded in Uttarakhand: 50,000 trapped by flooding and landslides after 'Himalayan tsunami' hits India

Fears that death toll of 150 could soar, with up to 14,000 unaccounted for

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project