Travel Passengers dine in the restaurant car of the Red Arrow to St Petersburg

For 150 years the railway line between Moscow and St Petersburg ran as straight as an arrow for 403 miles. Straight, but for one big bend near Novgorod. The story goes that Tsar Nicholas was so fed up of officials dithering over the route that he plonked a ruler on the map and drew a straight line between the two cities, accidentally drawing around his finger in the process. Too terrified to point out his error, the builders constructed the railway with the Tsar's bump in place.

Rutherford has not competed since suffering a hamstring injury

Nail-biter for Greg Rutherford

Olympic long jump champion Greg Rutherford’s hopes of being fit for next month’s World Championships suffered a setback when he was forced to pull out of next weekend’s Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games in London.

Andrea Antonelli in action earlier this season at Phillip Island

World Superbikes: Andrea Antonelli killed in horrific 250kmh crash in Moscow

Italian rider was hit by another bike in supporting Supersport race that was held in horrendous weather conditions

Corporate tax avoiders face global crackdown

New global rules to force tax avoiders to “pay their fair share” will be introduced under a 15-point action plan launched by the OECD yesterday.

Edward Snowden at a meeting with human rights campaigners at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport

Edwards Snowden lawyers reveal he could leave Moscow's transit zone within a week as GCHQ is cleared of using PRISM unlawfully

Russian lawyer says Snowden could leave soon whilst Parliamentary committee finds that reports GCHQ used a secret US programme to access internet providers were unfounded

James Dasaolu became the second fastest Brit of all time last Saturday

World Championships: Exciting James Dasaolu can pick up a Moscow medal, says Neil Black

Coach urges public to have faith in sprinter as he names squad for World Championships

Like a Cold War thriller – my meeting with NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden

When I received an email late on Thursday from “Edward Snowden”, I was naturally sceptical. The invitation, supposedly from one of the world’s most sought-after people, had a whiff of Cold War spy thriller to it. The note instructed me to go to the arrivals hall of Sheremetyevo Airport, and “someone from airport staff will be waiting there to receive you with a sign labelled G9”. What would you think?

Dynamic duel: 400m hurdlers Perri Shakes-Drayton and Eilidh Child

Eilidh Child tips rival Perri Shakes-Drayton for gold in Moscow

British champions do not necessarily make major waves internationally but that is not the case in the women's 400m hurdles.

Edward Snowden at a meeting with human rights campaigners at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport today

Edward Snowden 'yet to seek' Russia asylum as NSA whistleblower emerges from hiding

Fugitive from US intelligence services emerges from hiding at Moscow airport and says he wants to be allowed to fly to Latin America

Dai Greene could manage only second place in Gateshead last month

Athletics: Dai Greene pledges to restore normal service

World champion claims he has rediscovered his rhythm as Chambers chases place in Moscow

I will be up against Lisa Dobriskey (right) again today

Hannah England: It should be a great title fight between Lisa, Laura and me

Keeping Track: We've all been British champion and we'd all hope to be going to Moscow

Phillips Idowu shows his frustration at the Olympics last year

Phillips Idowu announces he is to take a 'step back from athletics'

The former world triple jump champion has endured a difficult spell spanning back before the London Olympics

The fugitive US whistleblower Edward Snowden alleged yesterday that the National Security Agency was 'in bed together' with German intelligence

Confusion mounts: Has NSA Whistleblower Edward Snowden accepted Venezuela's offer of asylum?

Head of Russian foreign affairs committee announces that he has accepted the offer in a tweet but quickly deletes it

The actress Tilda Swinton has posed on Red Square with a rainbow flag in an act of support for Russia’s beleaguered gay community

Russia a regime of 'scumbags', says opposition leader

Russia’s most prominent opposition leader described the country’s government as a regime of “scumbags” today in impassioned final words to a provincial court that could jail him for up to six years.

The opposition politician Alexei Navalny says a “feudal system” runs Russia

Alexei Navalvy on trial: blogger denounces regime of 'scumbags'

The judge in embezzlement case has retired to consider the verdict and sentence

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
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Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century