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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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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
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003