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One of the most brutal battles of the Second World War was the Nazi offensive against Stalingrad where atrocities were committed on both sides and the soldiers also had to contend with starvation and freezing conditions during a lengthy siege.

Free Syrian Army fighters carry their weapons as they run for cover in Daraya, near Damascus; Syamend Farhan says he is just happy to have escaped the terror of Syria

Syria civil war: You saved me, but I just think about the family I left behind

The story of one Syrian's journey from Damascus to Manchester

'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan

Photographer shocked at how photo was 'twisted'

Syria: John Kerry urges opposition to attend peace talks

The US Secretary of State, John Kerry, has urged the Syrian opposition on to attend next week's peace conference in Switzerland and said any individual chosen to lead a political transition in the war-torn country must be acceptable to both the government and opposing forces.

Free Syrian Army fighters carry their weapons as they walk towards the frontline in the refugee camp of Yarmouk, near Damascus

Yarmouk: A camp without hope for a people without a land

Of its 250,000 Palestinians, scarcely 18,000 now remain; up to 1,500 are dead, many of them due to hunger

The roadside bomb attack that killed the Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri in Beirut in February 2005

Rafiq Hariri murder trial: Proceedings begin - but the dock is empty

Nine years ago, Lebanon’s Prime Minister was murdered. But his alleged killers won’t be at the tribunal in The Hague as they haven’t been arrested. Robert Fisk says history shows the guilty will never face justice

Syrian rebel groups are drawing recruits from a variety of national backgrounds

EU citizens fighting in Syria pose threat of terror attacks when they return home, says domestic affairs chief

The first challenge for European governments is how to prevent young men and women from leaving to take part in the conflict

Syria crisis: Half of population in need of aid as Britain pledges another £100m

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon says ‘fighting has set Syria back decades’

Colin Firth and Emma Thompson, a Refugee Council patron, have called for the UK to offer a safe haven to Syrian refugees

Emma Thompson and Colin Firth call for UK to offer Syrian refugees a safe haven

Stars say 'money is not enough' and urge David Cameron to join other western leaders in providing places for 30,000 of the most vulnerable

Russia and US unite to push for Syria ceasefire as Kerry and Lavrov meet in Paris

Powers call for humanitarian aid as rebels fight each other

Rebel groups now fight each other as well as the army

'You need to go to Geneva': Opposition source reveals threat made by Britain and US over Syria peace talks

The two Western powers could withdraw support from the rebels unless they attend

US and Russia say negotiations close to ceasefire and aid convoy access in Syria

John Kerry and Sergei Lavrov met for talks in Paris this week ahead of a peace conference in Geneva

A man holds up a dust-covered baby who survived what activists say was an airstrike by forces loyal to the Syrian President, Bashar al-Assad, in the Duma neighbourhood of Damascus

UN to stop updating death toll in Syria conflict

The organisation said it could no longer guarantee the figures would be accurate

Bolton science teacher arrested by counter-terrorism officers over Syria links

Jamshed Javeed is alleged to have been planning to travel to the country

Geneva II: Iran not in first round of nations for UN Syria peace talks

Iran is not among the “first round” of nations invited to attend Syria peace talks in Switzerland later this month, a UN spokesman said.

Sunni fighters arm themselves with RPG missiles launcher and machine guns as they take up position in Fallujah city, western Iraq

The harm before the storm: Army battles to expel resurgent al-Qa’ida from Iraq

As the wars in Iraq and Syria increasingly become one, Iraqi Prime Minister Nour al-Maliki must restore order before sectarianism worsens

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The surrealist comedian at the Q Awards in 2010
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News
Russell Brand arriving for the book launch in East London
peopleRussell Brand cancels his book launch debate due to concerns about the make-up of the panel
Sport
Christiano Ronaldo enjoys his opening goal
champions leagueLiverpool 0 Real Madrid 3: Ronaldo and Benzema run Reds ragged to avenge thrashing from their last visit to Anfield
Arts and Entertainment
Awesome foursome: Sam Smith shows off his awards
music22-year-old confirms he is 2014’s breakout British music success
Life and Style
Six of the 76 Goats' cheese samples contained a significant amount of sheep's cheese
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Arts and Entertainment
Contestants during this summer's Celebrity Big Brother grand finale
tvBroadcaster attempts to change its image following sale to American media group
Extras
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Arts and Entertainment
Sir Nicholas Serota has been a feature in the Power 100 top ten since its 2002 launch
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Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Dales attempts to sell British Breeze in the luxury scent task
tvReview: 'Apprentice' candidate on the verge of tears as they were ejected from the boardroom
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Call me Superman: one of many unusual names chosen by Chinese students
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How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?