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South Korea rejected North Korea's offer to take a series of steps to ease tension that included cancelling Seoul's regular military drills with Washington, saying Friday that Pyongyang must take nuclear disarmament steps first.

James Moore: Osborne must respect get-tough plans for banks or be seen as a poodle

It is rather a sign of the times that the deal is nothing to do with the core business, the stock exchange itself

This picture received from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency on December 12, 2012 shows the rocket Unha-3, carrying the satellite Kwangmyongsong-3, being monitored on a large screen at a satellite control center in Cholsan county, North Pyongan province in North Korea. North Korea confirmed it had launched a long-range rocket and succeeded in its mission of placing a satellite into orbit.

UN Council to consider North Korea punishment for rocket

The United Nations Security Council unanimously condemned the North Korean rocket launch, calling it a "clear violation" of UN prohibitions.

A North Korean military band in Pyongyang celebrates the successful launch of the long-range rocket yesterday

How to halt North Korea's rocket launches? Ban imports of cognac

World Focus: Latest missile test shows Communist state will not be easily controlled

North Korea defies warnings and launches long-range rocket

North Korea fired a long-range rocket today in a second launch under its new leader, defying warnings from the UN and Washington.

International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Yukiya Amano

UN Nuclear Chief: Alleged weapons test site probably sanitised by Iran

The United Nations' chief nuclear official urged Iran on Thursday to allow inspection of a military base where Iranian scientists are suspected of conducting secret nuclear-weapons research, although he acknowledged that any traces of illicit activity have probably been removed.

This week's wackiest web stories: Batmobile for sale plus was Churchill the first hipster?

Mohamed Morsi on Planet of the Apes and a follow up story on the regrettable Romney face tattoo

US military chiefs 'planned to blow up the moon with nuclear bomb' as show of Cold War muscle, physicist claims

Claims that military bosses developed a classified plan to launch a nuclear weapon 238,000 miles to the moon where it would be detonated upon impact

The Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond has been moderate

Radicals threaten Salmond and Scottish independence campaign

Activists gather in Glasgow to try to steer breakway movement sharply to the left

The aftermath of the Israeli air strike on the al-Dallu family home

‘Flatten all of Gaza’ says son of Ariel Sharon

The son of former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has sparked outrage with an idiotic and hugely depressing op-ed in the Jerusalem Post.

Iranian nuclear programme makes progress

Iran has reached another milestone in its nuclear program, UN inspectors reported Friday, saying the country has completed work on an underground factory for making enriched uranium. Western officials fear that the heavily fortified facility could someday be used to make a nuclear bomb.

From elegant theory to infernal practice: ruins of the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall, after the atomic bomb of 6 August 1945

Inside the Centre: The Life of J Robert Oppenheimer, By Ray Monk

He was a poet, mystic, progressive - and the scientist who opened the gate of nuclear hell

Iran developing nuclear weapons could trigger an arms race across the Middle East, warns David Cameron

Allowing Iran to develop nuclear weapons would be a “desperately bad development for the world”, David Cameron said today as he held talks in the United Arab Emirates on future defence co-operation.

David Cameron defends Middle East visit insisting he WILL raise concerns about hosts' human rights records

The Prime Minister hopes to win billions of pounds of defence contracts during his visit

Britain urges countries to join forces in combating nuclear threat

Britain today issued a renewed appeal for countries to come together and combat the threat of a nuclear terrorist attack.

Hurricane Sandy: Extra inspectors dispatched to nuclear reactors

Extra federal inspectors were dispatched to US nuclear-power plants in the path of Hurricane Sandy as operators and officials reassured the public that they are prepared for high winds and flooding associated with the storm.

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Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker