News Office politics: Mr Ortikov’s troubles began as a British embassy employee

Guard who refused to be a spy says UK turned its back on him

Brown wheels out the weak and wounded

Even wheeling out the walking wounded was not enough. Gordon Brown was forced to resort to blatant bribes and an alleged deal with the nine Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) members to save his skin in the biggest Commons cliffhanger since the days of John Major's government.

Poll deepens Labour gloom as MPs return to Commons

The Conservative Party enjoys a 14-point lead over Labour, enough to give David Cameron an overall majority of 102, according to the latest poll by ComRes for The Independent.

Revealed at last: leading MPs' expenses claims

Gordon Brown once claimed £15 for light bulbs, Peter Mandelson spent nearly £3,000 on a shower and Tony Blair lavished nearly £11,000 of taxpayers' money on a new kitchen, according to the most detailed account of MPs' expenditure ever published.

Anger at lack of No. 10 invite for Dalai Lama

The Dalai Lama arrived in Britain today amid growing concern that he is not being received at Downing Street.

John Curtice: Tories are finally banishing ghost of Black Wednesday

Labour's heartlands seem to have been keen to give the party a kicking

Speaker bars MPs from querying expenses appeal

The authority of Michael Martin, the Commons Speaker, was challenged again yesterday after he barred MPs from discussing the High Court action to block the disclosure of their expenses.

MPs try to block expenses details

The Speaker of the Commons has lodged an appeal in the High Court to stop details of MPs' personal expenses and the addresses of their second homes being disclosed to the public.

Letters: Gay rights in Iran

Logic and courage needed to save gay Iranian from dire peril

Business leaders losing faith in Brown and Darling, survey shows

Business leaders have lost confidence in Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling to lead the British economy through difficult times, according to a new survey.

Steve Richards: Clegg could be an engaging and effective leader. But how much does that matter?

Leaders of the Lib Dems come and go. The dilemma remains the same

Clegg: 'Power and privilege keep us out of government'

Lib Dem leader attempts to reassert his authority with attack on the two-party system

Leading article: Mr Clegg and a question of authority

If there was one party leader who should have come out of the Commons debates on the European Reform Treaty smiling, it was Nick Clegg of the Liberal Democrats. Gordon Brown was saddled with Tony Blair's cynical promise of a referendum, which had been enshrined in the party manifesto. David Cameron leads a generally eurosceptic party that numbers some highly articulate pro-Europeans among its MPs. This week's referendum debate was going to be comfortable for neither leader.

Clegg faces Lords rebellion over his abstention policy on Lisbon Treaty

Nick Clegg is facing another damaging rebellion against his stance on the Lisbon Treaty, this time by Liberal Democrat peers who hold strong pro-European views.

Campbell denies spat with Clegg over Commons stunt

Sir Menzies Campbell, the former Liberal Democrat leader, is said to be furious over claims that he privately criticised his successor, Nick Clegg, for "childish" behaviour by staging a Commons walkout.

Alan Watkins: A very curious way of tying us in to Europe

The great Liberal Democrat Commons walkout was not only trumped by the roof protesters – it fell victim to its own folly
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Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones