News Balal was pardoned execution by the family of his victim

Samereh Alinejad stopped Balal Abdullah's hanging at the last moment

Geneva II: Iran not in first round of nations for UN Syria peace talks

Iran is not among the “first round” of nations invited to attend Syria peace talks in Switzerland later this month, a UN spokesman said.

Awkward positioning: Francois Hollande goes for a handshake with Austrian President Heinz Fischer but misses the target

Let’s (not) shake on it! Pictures of international snubs prove François Hollande’s popularity problem

Images add insult to ignominy for the man who polls suggest is now the most unpopular French president in history

This Lebanese woman was among those injured in the explosion which claimed the life of Mohamad Chatah in Beirut

Mohamad Chatah - Lebanon's man of dialogue - is murdered in Beirut

Mohamad Chatah died in a car bomb that killed five others

Sound and fury: Saudi Arabia’s concerns over Syria are not necessarily the same as ours

Saudi Arabia considers Syria a proxy war with Iran – and wants the US, and the rest of the world, to lend a hand

Spies like us: Claire Danes and Damian Lewis as Carrie and Brody in Homeland

Homeland accused of damaging relations between 'hostile' US and depicted countries

Iran, Lebanon and Venezuela have criticised 'poisonous' producers

John Kerry said that to suggest that the government had 'abandoned [Mr Levinson] or anybody has abandoned him is simply incorrect... and not helpful'

US has not abandoned ex-FBI agent Robert Levinson, says John Kerry

US government is pursuing a “number of different channels” as it seeks to determine whether or not he is alive

Chinese pride: The lunar probe Chang’e-3 landed on the Moon yesterday

One small hop for Mankind as China's Jade Rabbit rover lands on the Moon

China has sent six-wheeled lunar rover to the Moon searching for minerals, but the EU is after something more elusive

Indyplus Video: Iran monkey in space

Iran 'sends second monkey into space'

State television showed images of the rocket blasting off and returning

Gun attack at gas pipeline on Iraq-Iran border leaves 18 dead

15 Iranians and three Iraqis were killed during the gun rampage near Baquba

Robert Levinson: US man missing in Iran ‘was on CIA mission’

An investigation has claimed the retired FBI agent was on an unapproved intelligence gathering mission when he went missing in 2007

UN inspectors arrive in Tehran to visit Iranian nuclear facility

Inspectors from the UN nuclear agency have arrived in Tehran to visit a nuclear facility that has long been off-limits to outside experts, an Iranian news agency has said.

British diplomat Ajay Sharma to visit Iran for first time in two years

Visit by newly-appointed envoy will be first since British embassy in Tehran was stormed by activists in November 2011

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif shakes hands with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Geneva

Oil prices fall in wake of Iran nuclear deal

Brent crude fell as much as $3 a barrel to a four-week low of $108.50

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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
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home