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The birds' beauty belies their often menacing and destructive nature 

NSA infiltrated more than 100,000 offline computers using covert devices, says leaks

The intelligence agency reportedly inserted radio-transmitters into computers via spies and unwitting users to crack disconnected devices

The late Sam Berns (centre) with his parents Scott Berns and Leslie Gordon at the 18th Annual Nantucket Film Festival in June 2013.

Sam Berns: Funeral held for inspirational teenager with an ageing disorder

Well-wishers queued outside to pay their respects at the temple where the 17-year-old was laid to rest

Liz Cheney is dropping off the Senate race

Liz Cheney daughter of former Vice-President Dick pulls out of Senate primary

Liz Cheney, the daughter of the former Vice-President Dick Cheney, is abandoning her attempt to win a seat in the Senate, according to reports.

Ned Vizzini: Writer

Author whose accounts of his battles with depression gave hope to young people who were similarly afflicted

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (right) and David Cameron (L) view an honour guard during a welcoming ceremony inside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China

'Censorship' row overshadows David Cameron trip to woo China

Downing St make official complaint after financial journalist on PM's delegation banned from only official public event

Protesters call for press freedom in support of journalists from the ‘Southern Weekend’ in Guangzhou in January

Leading Bloomberg writer leaves China office after story ditched

It is another example of Beijing’s increasing pressure on foreign news organisations to drop embarrassing stories about the country's leaders

US network operators reject plans for mandatory smartphone kill switch

Software to deter theft will not be pre-installed on Samsung smartphones, with networks fearing profitable insurance policies will be affected

Wrong words: Senator Rand Paul has been castigated for using unattributed material

As somebody else once said... Kentucky senator Rand Paul exposed for plagiarism

Out of America: He has been nailed for using in a book of his a passage taken from Forbes magazine – but only in America could it threaten his promising career

Google's 'shared endorsements' means your reviews might appear in adverts

Changes to the company's terms and services opens the possibility of 'social' advertising

Author Tom Clancy has died, aged 66

Tom Clancy: Bestselling author of The Hunt for Red October dead from undisclosed causes aged 66

Writer was a canny businessman who managed to turn himself into a brand, spawning successful film and video game franchises

US Government shutdown: What does it mean? And what are the papers saying?

A partial shutdown of the US government has begun after the two houses of Congress failed to agree a budget last night, with the Republican-led House of Representatives adamant they would only agree to a deal if it included a delay to the start of Obamacare, the President’s package of health reforms.

IPCC report increases certainty humans are to blame for climate change. This is what you can do about it....

Right, so, it might not be exactly YOUR FAULT, but it's not entirely not your fault either. The IPCC climate change report, released today in Stockholm, has upped the certainty that man is the dominant cause of climate change to 95 per cent. Pretty certain, overall. And unless you happen to be an ape blessed with extraordinary powers of literacy, the fact that you're understanding this sentence implicates you in the whole heating mess. So here are ten Dos and Don'ts you can follow to cook the planet an infinitesimally smaller amount...

A woman views the Chinese social media website Weibo at a cafe in Beijing

‘Great Firewall of China’ closes for business in financial district: Government lifts Shanghai ban on Facebook and Twitter to make foreign investors 'feel at home'

Banned websites including the New York Times will only be available in specially designated economic zone

Orlando Bloom and Condola Rashad are Romeo and Juliet

Orlando Bloom earns mixed reviews for his Broadway debut in Romeo and Juliet

New York critics split on the Lord of the Rings star's performance in David Leveaux's production of the Shakespeare classic

The Sports City stadium is pictured in this artists impression

Fifa medical chief issues warning over summer World Cup in Qatar

The 2022 tournament is expected to be moved to winter

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...