Arts and Entertainment Win Butler of Arcade Fire. The band are confirmed to headline Primavera 2014

The National, Pixies, and Disclosure also confirmed for Barcelona festival

A Syrian man helps an injured man following an airstrike in Aleppo's Maadi neighborhood. Two children were among at least 13 people killed in new air strikes on a rebel-held district

Hundreds killed as Assad pounds Aleppo from the air

Since it began in mid-December, the government’s aerial bombardment has left more than 200 people dead

British prisoner Dr Abbas Khan found dead in Syrian jail days before he was due to be handed over to MP George Galloway

Family deny Syrian security authorities' claims that he committed suicide and demand an explanation

Book review: Pig's Foot, by Carlos Acosta (trs by Frank Wynne)

There is a character in this novel called Melecio, a precociously multi-talented child from a penniless village who can spontaneously compose poetry and single-handedly invents Art Deco architecture when he is just 16. The narrator turns out to be a similarly gifted individual whose literary ability is recognised from an early age. You may read something into the fact that the author is the Cuban dancer Carlos Acosta, whose extraordinary ballet skill was recognised globally when he was still in his teens. He is now an actor and choreographer whose autobiography, No Way Home, was released to great acclaim in 2007.

Letter from Khaled Mahjoub: Robert Fisk's untrue accusations about me

Below is a letter in response to this article by The Independent's Robert Fisk

Book review: Hanns and Rudolf, By Thomas Harding

A refugee soldier captured the man who ran Auschwitz. This act of homage follows the chase

Missile strikes in Damascus are ignored by the city’s middle classes who 'pretend that the war is not happening'

The death toll in Syria continues to rise - whoever is doing the counting

To the sound of the bombardment of rebel sites, Robert Fisk in Damascus discusses the victim tally with an Assad supporter

Walter faces up to Jack (Michael Bowen) in the final season

Breaking Bad spoiler alert: The 10 most heart-wrenching moments in Ozymandias

Every single chicken came home to roost all at once in last night's episode. Here are the 10 most shocking moments

Katy Perry has scored her fourth UK number one with 'Roar' after selling 179,500 copies in the last seven days.

Katy Perry roars to the top of the UK Singles chart

Katy Perry has roared her way to the top of the UK Singles charts for the fourth time.

Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault addresses the French National Assembly on Syria

Syria crisis: Deep conflicts surface as French debate military strike

Government accused of hitching itself to an American ‘adventure’ without UN backing

Chinese official ‘drowned by investigators’

Six investigators trying to extract a confession held Yu Qiyi’s head under icy water.

Syria crisis: Obama lines up Congress support for intervention as US Senate votes on draft plan

As President Barack Obama leaves for Europe, the White House keeps up campaign for Congressional support on action

Mr angry Trent Reznor of industrial rock veterans Nine Inch Nails

Simon Price on Nine Inch Nails at Reading Festival: Trent Reznor's not choosy – he hates everyone

The Nine Inch Nails frontman is still furious after all these years. But, at 78, Leonard Cohen knows it's better to be a lover than a fighter

Eminem performs on the main stage, during day two of the Reading Festival

The Playlist: Kurt Vile / Eminem / Nine Inch Nails

The songs that are hot on our playlist this week

Video: Tracks from the Playlist

Watch the videos below to take in tracks from this week's Playlist.

News
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'.
peopleThe idea has been greeted enthusiastically by the party's MPs
News
Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
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Voices
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
Arts and Entertainment
Avatar grossed $2.8bn at the box office after its release in 2009
filmJames Cameron is excited
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Happy in his hat: Pharrell Williams
people
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