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

Lisa Markwell: Why making a meal out of lists is a bad idea

You know what I never say to myself? Mmmmn, what I really fancy to eat tonight is an edible stone. Or crispy milk skin. Or some soil. This week – when the awards for the World's 50 Best Restaurants were announced – it's this kind of food that has been deemed most worthy of our attention. The winner of the No 1 slot (for a third year running) is Noma, the Danish paean to extraordinary, challenging dishes that look more like works of art than anything you'd put in your mouth. Coming up on the outside is Mugaritz, home of the stones (in actuality, potatoes made to look like stones. Go figure).

More children go to school hungry, warn teachers

Recession has caused a worrying rise in malnutrition among pupils, survey reveals

Aid crisis as children face starvation

Aid groups say they are nearly $200m short of the money needed to fight a growing hunger crisis threatening more than a million children across western and central Africa.

A table for one, please

The trend for no-reservation restaurants has a happy side-effect: dining alone has never been easier, says Charlotte McDonald-Gibson

Going solo: Charlotte McDonald-Gibson at Spuntino in Soho, where lone diners are welcomed

A table for one, please: Why dining alone has never been easier

The trend for no-reservation restaurants has a happy side-effect, says Charlotte McDonald-Gibson.

Charlie Creed-Miles (Bill) and Sammy Williams (Jimmy) break the cliched mould in <i>Wild Bill</i>

Wild Bill, Dexter Fletcher, 96 mins (15)
The Hunger Games, Gary Ross, 146 mins (12A)

Dexter Fletcher does the miraculous and breathes real life into the mouldering corpse of the gangster Britflick – but a much-touted dystopian fantasy is dead on arrival

Shaolin Soccer
The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games (12A)

Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth

Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) with Gale (Liam Hemsworth)

The Hunger Games: A mums' and dads' guide

It's the forthcoming movie the kids are all talking about - and you don't want to be left looking a square. Let Genevieve Roberts and Kate Youde guide you through this cultural minefield

Opinion polls predict that Vladimir Putin will win the election easily

Politicians stage hunger strike for right to stand in Russian election

Protest in provincial town highlights growing sense of frustration with corrupt officials. Shaun Walker reports from Lermontov

The main food sponsors, Cadbury, Coca-Cola and McDonald’s may, respectively, be using only fair-trade cocoa, reducing their packaging waste, locally sourcing beef and sustainable fish but some question their presence at a festival of athletic excellence altogether

Winners' dinners: how we will feed the Olympic crowds

The past may very well be a foreign country, but when Britain last held the Olympic Games in 1948 it might as well have been on another planet. Back then we spent a mere £700,000 on the games and every British male competitor got a free pair of Y-fronts and a cup of Horlicks. Today the games costs closer to £9bn, Horlicks is off the menu and the only pants given to athletes are from sponsors, and some even get a hefty cheque for donning them.

The main food sponsors, Cadbury, Coca-Cola and McDonald’s may, respectively, be using only fair-trade cocoa, reducing their packaging waste, locally sourcing beef and sustainable fish but some question their presence at a festival of athletic excellence altogether

Winners' dinners: How will hordes of hungry Olympic athletes – and crowds of spectators – be fed?

The past may very well be a foreign country, but when Britain last held the Olympic Games in 1948 it might as well have been on another planet. Back then we spent a mere £700,000 on the games. Scouts carried messages between officials, and brought cups of tea for the runners. Everyone still had a ration book, and every British male competitor got a free pair of Y-fronts and a cup of Horlicks. Today the games costs closer to £9bn, Horlicks is off the menu and the only pants given to athletes are from sponsors, and some even get a hefty cheque for donning them.

Last Night's Viewing: Bees, Butterflies and Blooms, BBC2<br />My Life: Home Grown Boys, BBC1

"I'm on a campaign to wake people up," said Sarah Raven at the beginning of Bees, Butterflies and Blooms. She was on a mission, she explained, to prevent "a quiet catastrophe", namely the declining numbers of bees and pollinators in the ecosystem, a decline that might eventually have a direct impact on our ability to feed ourselves. It all sounded quite serious to me, entirely justifying her use of the word "crisis" at the very top of the programme. And it was at that point that I wondered whether Raven had really chosen the best title for her series. Bees, Butterflies and Blooms sounds like the title of a parish calendar, a bucolically cosy affair that sounds as if decoration is its highest goal. Looking at it in the schedules, you could easily dismiss it as a bit of natural history infill, designed to plug a gap in the mixed planting of the schedule's municipal flowerbed. It should really have been called "Don't You Get It You Fools, All the Bees Are Dying!"

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A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

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A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

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The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

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The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

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Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

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House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

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Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
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International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

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