News

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon says ‘fighting has set Syria back decades’

Paperback review: Peaches for Monsieur Le Cure, By Joanne Harris

The final volume in Harris’s Chocolat trilogy finds witchy heroine, Vianne Rocher, returning to Lansquenet-sous-Tannes.

President Thein Sein has declared a state of emergency in Meiktila

State of emergency in Burmese city as 20 die in sectarian violence

Burma declared a state of emergency in the central city of Meiktila today after sectarian violence left at least 20 dead, reinforcing fears that the newly democratic country is struggling to contain simmering hatred between majority Buddhists and minority Muslims.

Pyongyang metro station

North Korea: ‘If the US has nuclear weapons, why can’t we?’

North Korea’s nuclear test drew international censure. But Pyongyang rejoiced, says Andrew MacLeod, in a rare dispatch from the pariah state

Marc Dutroux

Release my son and he will start again, serial child-killer Marc Dutroux's mother warns

Paedophile serial killer’s parole request denied by Belgian court after 16 years in prison

The NHS employs more than 1.3 million staff and runs up to 500 hospitals

This sickness is about more than individual failings

It’s tempting to look for scapegoats. But it’s the wider culture that needs addressing

The Last Quarter of the Moon, By Chi Zijian, trans. Bruce Humes

Enter another world with this magical novel of nomadic life as the time of the shaman ends

Tombstone: The Untold Story of Mao's Great Famine, By Yang Jisheng, trans. Stacy Mosher and Guo Jian

This epic work of testimony and investigation lays bare a Communist crime of the century

In a statement today, Jeremy Hunt said: I am disgusted and appalled to read these accounts of what patients and their relatives went through.

Jeremy Hunt 'disgusted and appalled' by reports of neglect at hospital where elderly man died of starvation

Reports claim some patients treated by the Worcestershire Acute NHS Hospital Trust were left thirsty with drinks left out of reach while others were left to sit in their own excrement

North Korea: Images from above the 38th parallel

These eerie pictures from North Korea were taken by photographer David Guttenfelder. He describes what it is like to capture life inside the world's most secretive country.

Syrians queue for bread

Food shortages in Syria send prices soaring

Plenty of food lines the shelves in Abd al-Razzak's warehouse, but only for those who can afford the sky-high prices needed to cover the bribes it took to transport it there.

The persecution of the Rohingya: how a benighted minority in Burma suffer at the hands of despots

A leading advocate for human rights in Burma argues that international ignorance of what is happening in Rakhine State is a tragedy in itself

Tokyo Jungle – Review

A unique experience in the pantheon of the PS3.

Iraqis welcome all-American grub with open mouths

Baghdad's embattled residents can finally get their milkshakes, chili-cheese dogs and buckets of crispy fried chicken – original recipe or extra spicy, of course.

Loyd Grossman quit 'Masterchef' in 2000

Food: Loyd Grossman to star in 'Eggs Factor' show

He has deliberated, cogitated and digested for long enough. More than 10 years after he quit the original Masterchef, Loyd Groooossman of the long vowels will activate his TV tastebuds again as a judge on Simon Cowell's new cookery show.

Powys mother jailed for leaving baby daughter home alone

A mother has been jailed after leaving her baby daughter at home alone while she went out drinking every day for a week over Christmas.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform