Arts and Entertainment Ellie Goulding has refused to sing at the Sochi Winter Olympics due to Russia's anti-gay laws

The singer turned down a request to sing at the Sochi opening ceremony

Red Fortress, By Catherine Merridale: Book review

The corridors of Russian power are studied through the history of the Kremlin

Keeping the Litvinenko papers secret will smooth the path of one possible Putin successor

Putin's chief of staff Sergei Ivanov was well known to the murdered double-agent

Vladimir Putin is awarded grandmaster rank in taekwondo and given black belt - despite not practising the sport

Russian president now ranks higher than Chuck Norris in South Korean martial art

Putin is a 'proud buff dude' and Russia should not be vilified for anti-gay laws ahead of Sochi Olympic Games, says US swimmer

Richard Alther appeals to Russia President to treat gay athletes with compassion and respect

Greenpeace activists hold a demonstration during the Champions League match between Basel and Schalke

Arctic protest banner by Greenpeace receives frosty reception from authorities during Champions League match

Uefa opens disciplinary proceedings against FC Basel after four abseiling environmentalists stopped play during fixture against Schalke

Syria crisis: John Kerry and Sergei Lavrov announce 'constructive' Geneva meeting to continue in New York as US and Russia push for 'Geneva 2' peace talks

The international envoy for Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, held meeting with John Kerry and Sergei Lavrov as key talks in Geneva enter the second day.

Alexei Navalny speaks to the press outside his headquarters in Moscow, Russia

Moscow mayor election: Defeat for Vladimir Putin’s biggest rival Alexei Navalny may yet be a pivotal moment

Anti-corruption candidate sought votes by attacking Russia’s president

Boris Berezovsky was found dead at home last year

Moscow demands seizure of Boris Berezovsky’s Serbian assets

Moscow is trying to seize assets in Serbia allegedly belonging to the late Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky, in an apparent attempt to claim some of what may be left of the fortune of Vladimir Putin’s once bitter foe.

On my own: Vladimir Putin walks alone through the streets of St Petersburg

Russian President Vladimir Putin cut a lonely figure today after he was spotted wandering by himself through the streets of St Petersburg.

Alexander Lebedev urges US taxman to look at GE

A striking theme of the court case was the length to which GE goes to avoid paying US taxes. Although based firmly in the US, Gecas and PK were were technically established in low-tax Shannon in Ireland and Luxembourg.

Russian President Vladimir Putin holding a huge pike fish, after he caught it in the Tyva during his holiday

'It was this big' Really? Russia thinks there's something fishy about Putin's 26 pound pike

'This pike weighs no more than 26.5 pounds' one commentator noted. 'Unless it swallowed a bar of gold'

UK bars are increasingly joining the Russian vodka boycott

No equal rights, no vodka nights: gay clubs boycott Russian imports

Popular British gay bars and nightclubs have joined a global boycott of Russian vodka brands following allegations of human rights abuses by Vladimir Putin’s government.

Vladamir Putin in his aquatic vehicle

Mission implausible: Vladimir Putin dives to bottom of Gulf of Finland in search of another photo op

Last time Vladimir Putin went into the sea for a photo opportunity, he brought back from the depths a collection of shards of ancient pottery (which later turned out to have been planted for him to find).

Chechen militant leader Doku Umarov

Chechen militant, Doku Umarov, targets Winter Olympics in Sochi

Russia’s most wanted terrorist has vowed to cause havoc at next year’s Winter Olympics in a chilling video message posted online.

A TV screen shows a news report about Edward Snowden in Hong Kong

Vladimir Putin confirms Edward Snowden is still in Moscow airport and blocks US extradition demands, as Venezuela says it would consider asylum request

Russian President says former CIA employee remains a free man, and the sooner he chooses destination the better

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i100 In this video, the late actor Leonard Nimoy explains how he decided to use the gesture for his character
Arts and Entertainment
Secrets of JK Rowling's Harry Potter workings have been revealed in a new bibliography
arts + ents
News
Robert De Niro has walked off the set of Edge of Darkness
news The Godfather Part II actor has an estimated wealth of over $200m
Arts and Entertainment
Fearne Cotton is leaving Radio 1 after a decade
radio The popular DJ is leaving for 'family and new adventures'
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news
Sport
Robbie Savage will not face a driving ban
football'Mr Marmite' faced the possibility of a 28-day ban
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It was only when he left his post Tony Blair's director of communications that Alastair Campbell has published books
people
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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
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower