News Activists carry posters as they shout slogans during a protest march against the gangrape and murder of a teenager, in India. The Indian politician has apologised after she said women invite rape.

She came under criticism from members of her own party who distanced themselves from her remarks

Kim Jong-Un, 'Sexiest Man Alive'. China's Communist Party newspaper, 'People's Daily', treated a spoof award by satirical US website The Onion as genuine

China's party paper falls for Onion story hailing Kim Jong Un as sexiest man alive

'World's sexiest...' polls can often turn up a surprise outside contender, so one might forgive China's state-run newspaper for not questioning a spoof report that hailed the leader of their close ally North Korea as the "Sexiest Man Alive".

Thawing of relationship between Fifa and FA

The Football Association and Fifa today moved to heal the rift between the organisations that developed after England's failed 2018 World Cup bid.

Woman sets herself on fire in Tibetan protest

A Tibetan taxi driver set herself on fire and died in the latest protests against Chinese rule over her homeland, overseas rights groups confirmed yesterday.

Postal Service lettercarrier Raymond Hou delivers mail along his route

US postal service posts annual loss of $15.9bn

The US Postal Service on Thursday reported a record annual loss of $15.9 billion in the past fiscal year, prompting renewed calls for Congress to pass legislation to help.

China's president Hu Jintao quits as party chief

China's president Hu Jintao has stepped aside as ruling party leader to clear the way for vice president Xi Jinping to take over as part of only the second orderly transfer of power in 63 years of Communist rule.

Security is tightened ahead of China's transition of leadership

With a friendly face, China tightens security

China's authoritarianism has many faces, but rarely does it appear in the friendly, grandmotherly guise it has taken over the past week, as thousands of older women have shown up on the streets of the capital, their vigilant eyes eager to ferret out the smallest signs of trouble.

Sander Levin, the ranking Democrat on the Ways and Means Committee warns of the human cost

Two million could lose jobless benefits unless Congress extends programme

More than 2 million Americans stand to lose their jobless benefits unless Congress reauthorizes federal emergency unemployment help before the end of the year.

Editorial: China's new leader must move with the times

Resistance to political reform will be intense, but the status quo is unsustainable

Obama with John Kerry in 2008

Barack Obama prepares to build bridges – but first he needs new allies to help him do it

Urgent work to avert the 'fiscal cliff' as key figures from first term get ready to leave President's team

Chinese President Hu Jintao: A parting shot from the world’s most powerful man

After hailing a ‘glorious decade’ in power, the outgoing Chinese President served a dire warning on his successors at Congress to tackle corruption and social unrest – or lose everything

The number of women increases in Congress

Election boosts ranks of women in Congress

Twenty years after the election that was heralded as the "year of the woman" comes another one that could be called that.

Split Congress leaves US still on edge of 'fiscal cliff'

So the Republicans retained their majority in the House of Representatives and the Democrats kept control of the Senate – a recipe for continued gridlock in Congress as the country is threatened with tumbling off a "fiscal cliff". Yesterday, jittery world markets reacted accordingly and stocks plunged.

Soldiers march in Beijing below a portrait of Mao Zedong

China’s top brass promise crackdown after Bo Xilai scandal

Vow comes on eve of crucial meeting to select country’s leaders for the next decade

The Communist elite has endorsed the expulsion of politician Bo Xilai

Bo expelled as party cleans up for handover

The ruling Communist elite has endorsed the expulsion of the disgraced politician Bo Xilai and approved final preparations for the party's forthcoming Congress.

Protesters halt factory expansion in Ningbo

Thousands of protesters who marched through an eastern Chinese city today to protest about the expansion of a petrochemical factory won a pledge from the local government that the project would be halted.

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