News Syrian refugees look out from an evacuated house in Istanbul. Hundreds of Syrian refugees will be allowed to come to Britain under new government plans

Hundreds of Syrian refugees will be allowed to come to Britain under plans to be announced by the Government on Wednesday.

May reveals plans for FBI-style crime agency

Plans for an American-style National Crime Agency (NCA) were set out yesterday by Theresa May, the Home Secretary, to tackle the estimated 6,000 organised-crime gangs in Britain.

Agency to fight organised crime

A US-style National Crime Agency will have a sweeping new power to step in to directly task and coordinate police forces in a bid to tackle organised crime and secure the UK's borders, the Home Secretary said.

How did they get in? Hay Festival's success spawns its own fringe

Each May Peter Florence pitches his marquees in a field below the town of Hay-on-Wye on the Welsh-English border, ready to receive 100,000 visitors to his Hay Festival.

Home Secretary made to suffer in silence for police spending cuts

Plans to cut spending on the police by 20 per cent over four years were condemned by the Police Federation

Home Secretary accused of betraying police

The Home Secretary refused to relent on her police cuts today as angry rank and file officers said she had lost their trust.

The Sketch: Lies, smears, tantrums – the new politics hasn't arrived just yet

With all of us agitating for a new politics it's remarkable how resilient the old politics is. A different voting system ain't going to change that, so don't grieve (or exult) too loudly when the results come in.

Volunteer police bid 'a slap in the face'

Hundreds of the country's most experienced police officers who were forced to retire under a legal loophole are being encouraged to return to Britain's second largest force as unpaid special constables.

Diary: A right royal misery

Well, there I was finally planning my long-awaited Royal Wedding Special, when old misery guts himself Mr Morrissey has to go and bloody well stamp all over it!

Diary: Yvette finally gets her man

While traditionally reluctant to trade on my considerable showbiz connections, occasionally I make a welcome exception. Following my report yesterday on shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper's touching devotion to Seventies Eurovision winners Brotherhood of Man, I'm pleased to announce that the band have been in touch.

Diary: Downing Street's in a tails spin

Well, what a right old pig's ear that was! One minute we were being told by Number 10 that Dave (PM) would be sticking two fingers up to all those silly old snobs insisting he had to wear traditional tails on the day of the royal wedding – the next we hear he'll be donning his Bullingdon best after all. Just as Tory heartlands everywhere were struggling to come to terms with the prospect of their leader embarrassing the nation in such a shoddy fashion, flustered Downing Street lackeys were suddenly spinning a different yarn altogether, insisting the Prime Minister had in fact always intended to embrace his fate on 29 April. Someone, we were pointedly told, had jumped the gun by unofficially suggesting otherwise – someone who hadn't even bothered to check with his boss before opening his big fat stupid mouth!

John Rentoul: One hot potato makes a mash-up

Making political capital of immigration is a hazardous ploy for the Prime Minister and the coalition

Tom Sutcliffe: Don't believe what you read in headlines ...

Social Studies: Do we even have a political culture that allows for intelligent discussion anymore?

Simon Carr: Spit it out, Yvette. It's meant to be an Urgent Question

Sketch: David Davis praised the police as having upped their game since the G20 demos – fair play, they didn't actually kill anyone

Government considers 'thug' crackdown

The Government is considering a crackdown on hooligans who cause trouble at public protests in the wake of the "mindless violence" which marred a huge union-organised demonstration.

Police clash with protesters from campaign group

Hundreds of people attempted to hijack today's main anti-cuts demonstration to wreak havoc in London's West End.

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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