News North Korean leader Kim Jong Un walks past his uncle Jang Song Thaek - Jang Song Thaek is reported to have been executed for 'attempting to overthrow the state'

Claims that secretive communist regime has carried out a further brutal purge of those the young leader sees as a threat to his authority

Kenneth Bae, the tour operator held in a North Korean jail

North Korea: Pyongyang ups ante with 15-year sentence for US tour operator

Kenneth Bae could  be used as bargaining chip in nuclear standoff with Washington

American sentenced to 15 years hard labour by North Korea for alleged crimes against the state

Kenneth Bae charged with "committing crimes aimed at toppling the Democratic People's Republic of Korea with hostility towards it"

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (C) talking with officials of the Ministry of People's Security in Pyongyang. Kenneth Bae (left) who has been detained for nearly six months in North Korea and sentenced to 15 years of labor for crimes against the state

North Korea sentences American Kenneth Bae to 15 years' hard labour

An American detained for nearly six months in North Korea has been sentenced to 15 years of “compulsory labour” for unspecified crimes against the state.

North Korea to put American tour operator Kenneth Bae on trial for 'trying to overthrow the government'

Analysts say North Korea will probably hand Bae a harsh punishment to use him as a bargaining chip in possible negotiations with the US

Reporter John Sweeney in the BBC's undercover documentary inside North Korea

Grace Dent on TV: North Korea Undercover: Panorama

I loved the chipper ferocity of John Sweeney's tour guides. But where are they now?

Pyongyang: Lift sanctions and we’ll talk

North Korea has demanded the lifting of United Nations sanctions and the end of US-South Korea military drills as conditions for resuming talks meant to defuse tension on the Korean Peninsula.

John Kerry meets China's top leaders to discuss North Korea

US Secretary of State John Kerry met China's top leaders today in a bid to persuade them to exert pressure on North Korea to scale back its belligerent rhetoric and, eventually, return to nuclear talks.

North Korea 'has nuclear weapon it can mount on rocket' warns US, as John Kerry warns missile launch would be 'huge mistake'

Mr Kerry arrived South Korea as part of a unusual diplomatic journey, traveling directly into a region bracing for a possible North Korean missile test

In an effort to firm up support and loyalty Kim Jong-un has to keep visiting his military bases

Spy claims Kim Jong-un is struggling to control the North Korean army

A former North Korean spy has claimed Pyongyang’s threats of military action are a sign that Kim Jong-un is struggling to control his armed forces.

North Korea nuclear threat: South Korea warns citizens that Pyongyang is now ready to launch a missile 'at any time'

South Korea’s warning of an 'imminent' strike comes as the North prepares to mark the April 15 birthday of the nation’s founder Kim Il-sung

Guard duty: A North Korean soldier keeps watch on South Korea last week from the truce village of Panmunjom

South Korea backtracks on nuclear test claim as tensions continue to rise across region

A government official said that Mr Ryoo had intended to say that North Korea has long been ready to conduct a nuclear test

UK diplomats remain in place despite North Korea warning as Pyongyang moves missiles onto coast prompting fears of imminent attack

Beijing is believed to have sent private messages to Kim Jong-un urging caution

Office workers and shoppers throng the night-time streets of Seoul

The South Korean reaction: 'Pyongyang has been crying wolf for some time'

South Koreans, who have seen it all before, are carrying on as normal

North Korea’s military strength is paraded in Pyongyang

David Cameron: North Korea nuclear strike could hit UK

David Cameron provoked surprise today when he claimed that North Korea now possessed the capability to launch a nuclear strike against Britain.

North Korea moves missile 'with considerable range' to its east coast, as US troops in South are put on high alert amid rising tensions and threat of 'merciless' nuclear strike

Reports in the Japan suggested missile could be a KN-08, which is believed to be a long-range missile that if operational could hit the United States

Voices
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
News
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Sport
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
Life and Style
food + drink
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
film
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas