News Iranian Teacher Ali Mohammadian with 8-year-old Mahan Rahimi, in a photo taken before Mahan's classmates followed their teacher and also shaved their hair.

Ali Mohammadian noticed his pupil was being bullied, and shaved his head to show his support

Turkish troops kill five Kurdish rebels

Turkey's state-run news agency says Turkish troops have killed five Kurdish rebels in an overnight clash in southeast Turkey.

MUQTADA AL-SADR: The Shia cleric is an influential player, whose support is vital to Nouri al-Maliki

Cleric tries to ease tensions with Kurds

Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr visited the president of the autonomous northern Kurdistan region yesterday seeking to ease tensions between Baghdad and the Kurds that have threatened the coalition government.

Market Report: Stocks linked to Iraqi oil stuck in the political mire

Oil production may be booming in Iraq, but punters were being told yesterday not to get their hopes up. While its government announced that its daily output had moved above 3m barrels for the first time since the 1970s, City scribes were warning that the risks of operating in the country were not being taken seriously enough.

Turkey: 17 killed in rebel clashes

Two Turkish soldiers and 15 Kurdish rebels have been killed in clashes in Sirnak, in the country's south-east.

Shia Muslims prepare for the festival of Ashura on 1 December in Baghdad. Shia festivals were previously banned

Patrick Cockburn: Are we witnessing the final disintegration of Iraq?

World View: Its three main communities – Shia, Sunni and Kurd – cannot seem to run the country together, and yet none can run it alone

Turkish air strike kills 35 in Iraq, say officials

Turkey's air force attacked suspected Kurdish rebel targets across the border in Iraq, the military said Thursday, but Kurdish officials claimed many of the roughly 35 people killed were teenaged smugglers mistaken for guerrillas.

Leading article: Alarming hints of future power struggles in Iraq

The deal the Americans did with the Shia, Sunni and Kurds was always uneasy

Tariq al-Hashemi says the accusations against him are fabrications

Iraqi PM escalates crisis with ultimatum to Kurds

Maliki's demands for handover of rival heighten fears of sectarian strife

Exxon woos GKP to gain Kurdish base

US oil supermajor Exxon Mobil is understood to have sounded out London-listed Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) over a possible deal that could value the Kurdistan-focused group at around £7bn.

Patrick Cockburn: A superpower not strong enough to set Iraq on course

The US invaded Iraq in 2003 in a show of strength after 9/11 to prove it was the world's sole superpower. But the war demonstrated that the US did not have the political and military might to determine the future of Iraq.

Crowds rampage in Iraqi Kurdish city after sermons 

Rioters attacked liquor stores, a massage parlor and hotels after being stirred up by fiery sermons in a predominantly Kurdish city in north Iraq, police officials said today. Pro-government crowds then attacked Islamist party offices in retaliation, they said. 

Baghdad pressed to stop obstructing Kurdistan oil

The British Government waded into the legal battle over control of oil in Kurdistan yesterday, calling on Baghdad to stop obstructing the development of the region's reserves.

Britain asks Iraq to back off after threats to Exxon

Hayward enters row over oilfields after US giant's deal with Kurdish region causes controversy

Chevron to join slick of oil supermajors in Kurdistan

American company set to enter the battle for a share of northern Iraq's massive reserves

Battle looms between US oil giant and Iraq

Baghdad threatens to throw ExxonMobil out after Kurdistan deal

News
Ben Little, right, is a Labour supporter while Jonathan Rogers supports the Green Party
general election 2015
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The 91st Hakone Ekiden Qualifier at Showa Kinen Park, Tokyo, 2014
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Life and Style
Former helicopter pilot Major Tim Peake will become the first UK astronaut in space for over 20 years
food + drinkNothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
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Kim Wilde began gardening in the 1990s when she moved to the countryside
peopleThe singer is leading an appeal for the charity Thrive, which uses the therapy of horticulture
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Alexis Sanchez celebrates scoring a second for Arsenal against Reading
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Voices
An easy-peel potato; Dave Hax has come up with an ingenious method in food preparation
voicesDave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
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Japan's population is projected to fall dramatically in the next 50 years (Wikimedia)
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Life and Style
Buyers of secondhand cars are searching out shades last seen in cop show ‘The Sweeney’
motoringFlares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
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Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own