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Apple's disappointing update this week sent shares in most of its suppliers tumbling, but smartphone parts maker Laird got City approval after its strategy update yesterday.

New army head is not afraid to speak his mind

General Sir David Richards, who was named next head of the Army today, is currently commander-in-chief of the land forces.

The translator, By Daoud Hari

Heroism and little miracles amid the barbarity of Darfur

Edward Davenport: The scandalous world of Britain’s most sociable socialite

He's made a fortune throwing parties for Russian oligarchs and Hollywood idols – now Edward Davenport is buying into the fashion industry. But what exactly goes on behind the stucco-fronted façade of Fast Eddie's swinging West End mansion? He gives Rob Sharp a private tour

Aid workers teach Sierra Leone's poor to shun witch doctors' malaria remedies

They don't look like witches, whatever witches are supposed to look like. They are often old, shrivelled, hardy farm workers who toil with the rest of the villagers, bent over in the searing heat of the sun. Sometimes they are young and bounding, in trainers and bright, funky shirts, displaying their wares with the eager eyes of an entrepreneur. And, in any case, many of these witch doctors have a point.

Nigel Reo-Coker: 'I'm 23, still single, no wife, no kids. I'm living in Birmingham by myself. I get very down, very low on confidence. Who do I turn to?'

He is one of the game's brightest young players yet, fuelled by a troubled spell at West Ham, the Villa midfielder is wracked by moments of anxiety, he tells Glenn Moore

Fifa bans matches at crumbling Sierra Leone stadium

Sierra Leone's decrepit national stadium has been banned from staging matches until the ground is brought up to international standards.

Russian arms dealer nicknamed the 'Merchant of Death' arrested in Thailand

Viktor Bout, an international arms dealer known as the "merchant of death" for his colourful and unscrupulous dealings in every troubled hot spot from Africa to the Middle East and Afghanistan, was arrested yesterday at a five-star hotel in Thailand following a tip-off that originated deep in the jungles of South America.

Johann Hari: The diamond heist that's mass murder

Almost unnoticed in the rich world, a trial for Crimes Against Humanity is taking place in the Hague. From a shiny modern courthouse, a medieval story is emerging – one where the poorest people in the world were invaded, raped and mutilated, just to seize some shiny stones for the richest people in the world to wear. The evidence and testimony at the trial of the former Liberian dictator Charles Taylor over the past few months has stretched beyond the court's tight remit to determine his own personal cruelty. Instead, the witnesses are finally revealing the inside story of the biggest diamond heist in history – one that killed 75,000 innocent people, crippled an entire country, and left a trail of blood that runs right to your local jewellery store.

Rich African states 'squander their wealth' as children die

Some of Africa's biggest "success stories" are accused today of squandering money they could be using to help prevent millions of children dying.

UNICEF Ambassador David Beckham visits Sierra Leone

At first sight, it looks like a celebrity spot-the-ball competition. Is the fellow to the left of David Beckham giving it a header? Is it sailing into the outstretched hand of the chap on the right? Er... no, actually: it's right there in the main picture, looking a bit dusty, down at the bottom.

Splendidly, this is not a competition in a tabloid newspaper, but a picture of David Beckham acting in his capacity as a "goodwill ambassador" for the UN children's organisation, Unicef.

The former England captain is having a kickabout with some residents of Freetown, Sierra Leone, and affecting one of his trademark poses: top off, tattoos on display, expensive designer clobber worn in reassuringly casual fashion (though surely Timberland boots went out with Vanilla Ice).

Becks could be forgiven for feeling like a fish out of water. As one of the best-paid sportsmen in history, he's used to playing in new boots and hi-tech kit on the green, green grass of the biggest and most atmospheric football pitches in the world.

If one were feeling uncharitable, one might say that taking part in a Unicef photo-op is the highest calling a modern celebrity can aspire to. Bob Geldof's done it, Angelina Jolie's done it – even Mrs Beckham's chum Geri Halliwell took a turn around the Third World patting babies.

But here, facts get in the way of weary cynicism. Beckham's four-day tour included a visit to a feeding centre in Makeni in the country's Northern Province, where he was touchingly photographed with Senyo, a five-year-old boy so badly malnourished that he can hardly walk. Makeni has the highest death rate among under-fives in Sierra Leone, which has one of the world's highest infant mortality rates. "In Sierra Leone, one in four children dies before reaching their fifth birthday," Becks said later. "It's tragic, especially when the solutions are simple. Saving these children's lives is a top priority for Unicef and as ambassador I hope I can help to draw attention to this issue."

Bodyguard testifies against Taylor at war crimes trial

A bodyguard of the former Liberian president Charles Taylor has given dramatic evidence against him, revealing the existence of a secret radio room that connected his mansion with the machete-wielding rebels on the front line in neighbouring Sierra Leone.

Taylor trial hears of mutilation

The first witness in Charles Taylor's war crimes trial testified yesterday that Sierra Leone rebels backed by Taylor mutilated and terrorized civilians to seize diamond fields, and that Taylor used the profits to buy weapons.

Dear Sissy: West Africa's newest agony aunt takes on sexual traumas left by a civil war

Usman has issues with girls. The teenager is so anxious about his failure to attract any, that he writes a desperate letter to a woman he has never met.

Thousands of fans rise up in support of player facing exile

The Watford midfielder is appealing against deportation to Sierra Leone
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Tim Vine has won the funniest joke award at the Edinburgh Festival 2014
peopleTim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
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Jamie and Emily Pharro discovering their friend's prank
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Taylor Swift crawls through the legs of twerking dancers in her 'Shake It Off' music video
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Pornography is more accessible - and harder to avoid - than ever
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The eyes have it: Kate Bush
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment