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This millennium, Britain’s dragonfly contingent has been in the throes of revolution. Several sparkling species have crossed the sea to start colonising the UK. In this ambitious itinerary, you might see up to seven magnificent dragonflies unknown in Britain two decades previously.

Iraq to sue Genel Energy over exports

Baghdad is preparing to sue Genel Energy, the oil company run by the former BP chief executive Tony Hayward, for "illegally" exporting some of the oil it produced in the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan.

Bakries threaten to backtrack on offer to exit Bumi amid dispute

The Bakrie family has threatened to withdraw an offer to exit the London-listed miner Bumi by buying back some of their Indonesian coal assets as their dispute with Nat Rothschild deepens.

Young Syrian refugees gather around a small fire at the Minieh camp in Lebanon

'It's only fit for rats': Syrian refugees on brink of disaster

UN warns of a 'staggering humanitarian disaster' as families flee civil war

Shell faces fresh scrutiny over Alaskan drilling

The pressure is mounting on Shell to abandon its quest for Arctic oil after the US government ordered two reviews into the company's activities off the Alaskan coast that could halt its planned drilling campaign.

Rapper Dappy, real name Dino Costas Contostavlos, outside court

N-Dubz rapper Dappy's saliva 'found on victim'

Saliva found on the t-shirt of a victim allegedly involved in a fight with N-Dubz's Dappy has a "billion-to-one" DNA link to the rapper, a court has heard.

The Business Matrix: Wednesday 9 January 2013

Samsung rings up more huge profits

WATCH: Oil flows wrong way in brain-twisting illusion

Can any physicist readers work out what's going on here? SWAMP, an artistic duo, have created an installation called 'Supermajor' - video above - in which oil is clearly pouring out of a vintage can, puddling onto a table below, but looks like it's in fact climbing up from the puddle back into the can. We're completely stumped...

Shell drilling rig refloated off Alaska in recovery bid

A recovery team has refloated the Shell oil drilling rig that ran aground last week near an Alaskan island, and began towing it yesterday towards a more sheltered position 30 miles away.

The Kulluk oil rig near Sitkalidak Island, pictured on Tuesday

New twist in stricken rig saga: Shell was moving it to avoid tax

The oil giant will instead suffer a multi-million dollar loss on the exercise after the rig ran aground off the Alaskan coast

The drilling unit Kulluk ran aground near Alaska

Shell oil drilling platform stranded in sensitive Arctic region

The multinational oil giant Shell is facing fresh criticism of its Arctic offshore oil drilling programme, after one of its platforms was left stranded in an environmentally sensitive area of the Alaskan coast.

'No oil leak' from Royal Dutch Shell drilling rig Kulluk which ran aground off Alaska

Crews aboard two aircraft which flew over an oil drilling ship that went aground in a severe Alaska storm say there is no sign that the vessel is leaking fuel or that its hull has been breached.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski: Hailed heroism of lifeguard

Shell rig runs into Alaskan shore

A drilling rig that Shell planned to use off Alaska's Arctic coast ran aground in a storm Monday night, after the crew had been rescued earlier by the Coast Guard. As of late Tuesday, no fuel had spilled.

Another board member forced to resign at Bumi

The soap opera continued at Bumi yesterday after yet another board member was forced to resign from the conflict-riven Indonesian coal miner created by Nat Rothschild, pictured, and the Bakrie family in November 2010.

Bumi hit by another exit as Takeover Panel seeks answers

The soap opera continued at Bumi yesterday after yet another board member was forced to resign from the conflict-riven Indonesian coal miner created by Nat Rothschild and the Bakrie family in November 2010.

Private quarters: Four luxury family and VIP suites and a prayer room that generates virtual prayer mats facing Mecca

Doors to manual, taps off in the Turkish spa... the Saudi prince whose flying palace has it all

Saudi investor’s £300m super-jumbo also has room for a concert hall, a garage for his Rolls and four luxury suites

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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
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

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
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all