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Israel bombards Rafah after soldier disappears amid Gaza ceasefire collapse
More than 50 Palestinians killed as fate of Hadar Goldin remains unknown following truce-breaking tunnel clash with Hamas Follow the latest developments in our live blogFighting broke out with renewed ferocity in Gaza on Friday as Israeli forces bombarded the town of Rafah in response to the apparent capture of one of its soldiers by Hamas, after an internationally brokered ceasefire collapsed almost immediately.Peace talks planned in Cairo to take advantage of the truce stalled before they began, as the threat of a new escalation loomed, possibly involving an Israeli ground assault on Rafah in search of Second Lieutenant Hadar Goldin. His fate was unclear, as Hamas issued conflicting statements about whether it had captured him. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 20:05:00 GMT)

Cameron and Osborne face questions over taxpayer-funded coastal visits
PM and chancellor accused of paying special attention to marginal seats as they visit Eastbourne's fire ravaged pierDavid Cameron and George Osborne are facing questions over their taxpayer-funded visits to coastal constituencies to hand out millions of pounds in grants, including £2m for Eastbourne's fire-ravaged pier.The prime minister and chancellor appear to be paying special attention to seaside towns, many of which are being targeted by both Labour and Ukip. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 14:44:30 GMT)

Ebola outbreak 'moving faster than efforts to control it', says WHO chief
Efforts shift to finding those who have come into contact with victims as Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia battle epidemicThis week, Awa Faye added a new feature to her restaurant on a crowded street in Sierra Leone's hilly capital of Freetown: a sign that instructs all patrons to wash their hands in the buckets of chlorinated water positioned outside. "I don't allow anybody inside if they don't wash your hands. We're all trying to protect ourselves from Ebola one way or another," said the 55-year old, who put the sign up after learning that the country's top Ebola doctor had died on Tuesday.Over in neighbouring Liberia, residents in the capital Monrovia have also been placing "Ebola buckets" outside offices, restaurants and homes. In Guinea, the prices of hand sanitiser and rubber gloves have soared. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 16:51:47 GMT)

MH17 investigators reach crash site two weeks after plane brought down
Convoy arrives in east Ukraine, with officials cordoning off zone as they search for bodies still believed to be missingA large team of international investigators reached the crash site of Malaysian Airlines MH17 for the first time on Friday, more than two weeks after the plane was brought down over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.A column of 101 people, including 21 observers from the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), 51 Dutch and 21 Australian police and investigators arrived at the site in more than a dozen vehicles and began trawling the fields around the crash site for human remains, debris and evidence. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:51:28 GMT)

Mail did not reveal to PCC or Leveson that News of the World hacked staff
Four Mail on Sunday journalists were told by the police in 2006 that their mobile phones had been hackedVital evidence about phone hacking was withheld from the Press Complaints Commission when it held its inquiries into the News of the World's interception of voicemail messages.The PCC was not informed by the Mail newspaper organisation that four of its Mail on Sunday journalists had been told by the police in 2006 that their mobile phones had been hacked. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:56:08 GMT)

UK summer on track to become one of hottest in a century
Average day-and-night temperature of 16.3C makes July the joint eighth-warmest since records were first collected in 1910There may be showers and slightly cooler weather due across much of the UK this weekend, but even that should not dampen the hopes of those wondering if the recent warm weather makes this summer one of the hottest on record.Official figures show summer 2014 is unlikely to reach anywhere close to the exceptionally warm conditions of 1976, 2003 or 2006. Nevertheless, the data shows this year is already ranking amongst the warmest summers of the last century while the past month ranks as the eighth warmest July in Britain's national records, equal with 1933. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:17:00 GMT)

Eritrean migrants risk detentions and beatings in Libya for a life in Europe
Poverty, war and oppression at home as much as collapse of government authority in Tripoli has turned Libya into a conduit for exodusThe migrant had been inside the wire of the Libyan detention centre for just 10 minutes when the beatings began. Picked up by police in Tripoli he knew that, without money or papers, and from Eritrea, he was at the bottom of the pecking order.They beat me for hours. They were not violent with everyone, but with me, yes, he said. After the beatings, I was separated from the others and put in isolation. It was a little cell, with nothing, for two weeks. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 16:20:32 GMT)

Uganda anti-gay law declared 'null and void' by constitutional court
Judges strike down legislation on a technicality, but activists say homosexuality remains criminal offence under colonial-era lawsGay rights campaigners in Uganda and around the world are celebrating a decision by the country's constitutional court to strike down a widely condemned anti-gay law on a legal technicality.Activists in the courtroom cheered after a panel of five judges ruled on Friday that the speaker of parliament acted illegally when she allowed a vote on the measure despite at least three objections that not enough MPs were in attendance. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 12:52:16 GMT)

Students should expect 'big variations' in GCSE grades, says exam watchdog
Return to end-of-course exams and changes to key subjects could see results vary across country, says OfqualStudents who sat GCSEs this summer should expect big variations in their grades the exams watchdog has warned, after the overhaul of the system which saw a return to end-of-course examinations and changes to key courses.Ofqual says it is impossible to predict what the national picture will look like when results are released on 21 August, but warns that many schools will see their students' grades vary significantly on last year. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 19:40:21 GMT)

Amazon tribe makes first contact with outside world
Indigenous people crossed from Peru into Brazil looking for help to combat illegal loggers and drug traffickers, researchers sayIndigenous tribesmen living deep in the Peruvian rainforest have emerged into the outside world to seek help, after suffering a murderous attack by probable drug traffickers. The contact took place across the border in Brazil and was recorded in a video released on Friday. The tribesmen caught a serious respiratory disease after contact, a major killer of isolated indigenous people, but have since recovered. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 06:53:57 GMT)

Facebook down in second major outage in two months
Following Junes half-hour outage, Facebook collapsed worldwide againFacebooks main site was down worldwide on Friday afternoon, the second major outage in less than two months.Users began reporting outages shortly after 4pm UK time, but unlike Junes collapse, the failure was spotty at first, with some users reporting continuous access well past 5:15. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 16:29:56 GMT)

Northern Ireland's first minister calls MI5 abuse rumours 'national scandal'
Peter Robinson has called for all files about the Kincora boys' home to be opened so the truth can be discoveredNorthern Ireland's first minister Peter Robinson said on Friday night that allegations of a cover-up of sexual abuse at a Belfast boys' home because the perpetrators were state agents is a national scandal.Robinson revealed that he has written to David Cameron asking the prime minister to open all security files relating to the Kincora boys' home scandal in east Belfast. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 20:31:47 GMT)

Mysterious lake in Tunisian desert turns from turquoise to green sludge
The stretch of water, dubbed the Lac de Gafsa, may be the result of a rupture in the rock above the local water tableThe lake appeared in the Tunisian desert like a mirage; one minute there was nothing but scorching sand, the next a large expanse of turquoise water.For locals, roasting in the 40C heat, the temptation to cool off in the inviting water quickly overcame any fears about the mysterious pool. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:53:00 GMT)

Thailand's ruling junta approves China rail links worth $23bn
Transport project further consolidates China's power in the region and will be finished by by 2021Thailand's ruling junta has approved a $23 billion (£13.6bn) transport project that will see two high-speed railways link up directly with China by 2021, in a move seen as a further consolidation of Chinese power in the region.The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), headed by Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha - who took control of Thailand in a bloodless military coup in May - unveiled plans this week connecting the northern border town of Nong Khai with Map Ta Phut, located south-east of Bangkok. Chaing Khong, just south of the Laos capital Vientiane, will also be connected to Ban Phachi, in the central Ayutthaya regions. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 16:09:35 GMT)

Michael Grade a possible BBC Trust chair contender
Lord Grade understood to have applied for chair role, though Nick Prettejohn remains only confirmed interview candidateWith a string of heavyweight names declining to be considered for the BBC Trust chair job, one unlikely figure still being linked to the role is media grandee Lord Grade.Grade is understood to have applied for the job, but it remains unclear whether he made the shortlist of candidates being formally interviewed as Lord Pattens replacement in the top BBC position this week. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 16:28:56 GMT)

Iraqis living under Isis rule in Mosul begin to show resistance
Despite military triumphs, Islamist militants are losing hearts, minds and obedience of residents who have had enoughIraqis living under Isis rule in Iraq, where non-Sunni residents have been forced from their homes and tens of mosques have been deemed idolatrous and marked for destruction, have started to push back against the extreme interpretation of Islam being imposed on them.The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant has won significant territorial victories and declared an Islamic caliphate in swaths of land it has seized, from al-Bab in Syria to Falluja in Iraq. The US recently said Isis was worse than al-Qaida (pdf) and that it had a "full-blown army". It has subsequently increased reconnaissance flights over Mosul, from one flight a month just two months ago to 50 flights a day. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:18:04 GMT)

Banksy graffiti rival King Robbo dies
Street artist, who famously feuded with Banksy in a series of tit-for-tat overpaintings, fails to recover from three-year comaKing Robbo, a pioneering British graffiti artist best known for a long-running dispute with his more famous peer, Banksy, has died after three years in a coma following an unexplained head injury, a spokesman has said.Robbo, who like Banksy kept his real identity a secret, was at the vanguard of the 1980s graffiti movement, known particularly for covering trains with his distinctive, US-inspired lettering. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 14:57:53 GMT)

Paris police lose 51kg of seized cocaine from their own headquarters
Drugs worth £2m vanish from force's famous HQ at 36 Quai des Orfèvres, just months after building was mired in rape allegationParis police are investigating the disappearance of 51kg of cocaine from a supposedly locked and sealed room in their own headquarters on the banks of the Seine.The cocaine "bricks" with a street value of around 2.5m (£2m) were seized a month ago after officers smashed a drug trafficking network in the capital. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 16:54:10 GMT)

World Trade Organisation deal on global customs falls through
Last-ditch attempt to salvage agreement scuppered after members clash over India's subsidy demandsEleventh-hour attempts to salvage a World Trade Organisation deal on simplifying global customs have collapsed, leaving the future of the Geneva-based institution in doubt.Talks to cut red tape on international borders broke down following India's refusal to back a deal unless it included concessions allowing developing countries freedom to subsidise and stockpile food. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:19:24 GMT)

Rolf Harris to appeal against jail sentence for indecent assaults
Veteran children's entertainer was jailed last month for assaulting a series of women and girls as young as eightRolf Harris, the veteran children's entertainer jailed last month for indecently assaulting a series of women and girls as young as eight, has sought to appeal against his sentence, the Judicial Office has said.A spokesman said the 84-year-old's lawyers lodged the papers at the court of appeal earlier this week. He said: "We can confirm that this has taken place. It will be considered by a single judge in due course." Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 10:31:37 GMT)

Happiness guru helps Salmond prepare for Scottish independence debate
SNP-backed yes campaign trails in polls by 14% before first minister's TV clash with Alistair Darling over referendumAlex Salmond has been getting performance advice from a lifestyle coach and happiness guru in advance of his crucial televised debate against Alistair Darling on Scottish independence.The coach, Claire Howell, has previously advised former footballer Stan Collymore and Welsh political party Plaid Cymru. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 19:02:40 GMT)

Edinburgh fringe to host its largest ever number of female standups
62% rise on last year hailed, but with women accounting for 17% of comics at 2014 festival, equality has some way to go at fringeWith more than 3,000 shows in 300 venues, the Edinburgh fringe on Friday began its 67th year in a loud, crazy blur and with an important statistic there are more female comedians in town than ever.Figures seen by the Guardian show a 62% rise on last year, a dramatic increase which means women now account for 17% of all acts at the comedy festival. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:18:14 GMT)

'Muslim Glastonbury' challenges perceptions of Islam in Britain
Talks about extremism, religion and sex alongside music and food at four-day celebration of Eid in LincolnshireRanging from sectarianism to sex, a four-day event nicknamed the "Muslim Glastonbury" is setting out to challenge perceptions of Islam in Britain.Living Islam, which began on Thursday at Lincolnshire Showground and continues over the weekend, is a celebration of Eid al-Fitr, which was marked by Muslims around the world this week at the end of the holy month of Ramadan. But the festival, perhaps more akin to a Muslim Hay-on-Wye than the music festival it has been compared to, also represents an opportunity for the expected 4,500 attendees to discuss the issues pertinent to them in contemporary Britain. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:59:51 GMT)

Father cleared of manslaughter of son who died 12 years after he shook him
Allan Young sobbed as Old Bailey jury found him not guilty over the death of Michael Winn, left severely disabled in 1998 attackA man who shook his newborn son, causing catastrophic brain injuries said to have led to the child's death more than a decade later, has been found not guilty of manslaughter following a landmark trial.Allan Young, 36, broke down in tears as the jury returned its verdict. Young had previously been jailed for 12 months after admitting causing grievous bodily harm to five-week-old Michael Winn in 1998, leaving him "severely disabled", the court heard. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:46:33 GMT)

Greenpeace 'Arctic 30' ship leaves Russia
Arctic Sunrise, one of three of the groups fleet, leaves Murmansk following several weeks of repairsA Greenpeace ship impounded by Russia has left the country nearly a year after armed coastguards stormed it in response to a protest against oil drilling.The Arctic Sunrise, one of three of the groups fleet, left Murmansk in the Arctic circle on Friday, following several weeks of repairs. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 09:09:07 GMT)

Commonwealth Games 2014: Englands hockey hero Maddie Hinch saves day
England 1-1 New Zealand; England win 4-1 on penalties Goalkeeper saves three penalties as England gear up for finalEngland has never been a country synonymous with penalty success but the womens hockey team went some way to making up for years of hurt by winning their shoot-out to reach the Commonwealth Games final.Bronze medallists in Delhi four years ago, they are guaranteed to go at least one better in Glasgow after edging a tense semi-final with New Zealand to set up a gold-medal match with the favourites Australia, who hammered South Africa 7-1 in the other semi-final. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:36:54 GMT)

Jimmy Anderson found not guilty and clear to face India in fourth Test
England bowler cleared of charges over spat India have no right to appeal against ICC judgmentIndia suffered their second humiliating defeat in as many days, and England enjoyed their second morale-boosting triumph, as the attempt to have Jimmy Anderson suspended for the remainder of the Test series was abruptly thrown out by an Australian judge.Gordon Lewis, who heard six hours of evidence relating to Andersons clash with Ravindra Jadeja via a video link from a Southampton hotel to his Melbourne base, had the option of pondering for up to 48 hours before releasing his verdict. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:31:12 GMT)

Carlo Ancelotti: Louis van Gaal will not win at once with Manchester United
Former Chelsea manager says United unlikely to win league Building a team is not easy, says Real Madrid coachCarlo Ancelotti believes Louis van Gaal will find it difficult to make Manchester United title contenders again, with the Dutchmans decision to implement a new system a further challenge for the new manager at Old Trafford.Ancelotti, speaking before Saturdays International Champions Cup meeting between his Real Madrid team and United, admires Van Gaals ability as a coach. But having won the Premier League and FA Cup double in his first campaign as Chelsea manager, in 2009-10, the Italian understands how tough Van Gaal may find elevating United. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 21:55:00 GMT)

Frank Lampard set for shock short-term move to Manchester City
Lampard to join Premier League champions before MLS begins Former Chelsea star could face the Blues twice in City coloursFrank Lampard is set to sign a short-term deal with Manchester City. The former Chelsea midfielder has agreed to join Citys Major League Soccer team, New York City, but they will not begin playing until March.Lampard rejected the chance to play in Melbourne at Citys other new venture and, although Queens Park Rangers appeared to be leading the chase for his signature, the 36-year-old favours a spell with Manuel Pellegrinis side. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 20:51:00 GMT)

Nicole Cooke a force for good and a thorn in side of cyclings big wheels
Cookes outspoken book, The Breakaway, is a compelling and salutary account of the price she paid for hard-earned victories from which many others in cycling will benefitFew men will be able to read Nicole Cookes new autobiography without wincing. For men, with the exception of her devoted father and one or two others who helped along the way, were always the problem, the ones who found endless means some ingenious, others crude to obstruct her path to glory.It is men about whom Cooke is writing when she describes the bungling, petty, political and indiscreet nature of the incompetence of so many. Those who think they know best, who arent open to learning from the experience of others, whose first instinct is to protect their positions: all of them men. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 13:33:50 GMT)

Arsène Wenger admits club captain Thomas Vermaelen may leave Arsenal
Louis van Gaal wants Belgian at Manchester United Wenger rules out signing Juan Fernando Quintero Manager refutes Steven Gerrards claim about Luis SuárezArsène Wenger has admitted Thomas Vermaelen may leave Arsenal. Arsenals club captain has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester United, where he would link up with his former manager at Ajax, Louis van Gaal.On Friday, at a press conference before this weekends Emirates Cup, Wenger said: At the moment Thomas Vermaelen is here. He is injured at the moment with a short-term injury. It [a move] could happen, yes its a possibility that he goes. If he goes we have to replace him because hes an important player in our squad. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 14:24:47 GMT)

Scotlands Dan Purvis seals perfect finale with parallel bars gold
Purvis edges out Max Whitlock and Nile Wilson for victory Wilson wins high bar while Claudia Fragapane adds gold No4If the Highland Fling Cam picks you out at these Games, you are supposed to cut a jig on the big screen for your fellow spectators. When it lit upon Dan Purvis, watching one of the early finals on Friday, he froze but happily he showed no such hesitation on the parallel bars, where his nerveless display brought Scotland another gold medal.It was the perfect finale for Purvis, who took inspiration from Dan Keatings composed win on the pommel horse. I was very shaky at the start of the week, Purvis said. Ive felt quite a bit of pressure coming into the Games. The individuals didnt go the way I wanted and I thought, Ill just enjoy it now. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:41:40 GMT)

Liverpool close to signing Alberto Moreno and Javier Manquillo
Ian Ayre in Spain to finalise deals with Sevilla and Atlético Young duo seen as national teams future full-back pairingLiverpools chief executive, Ian Ayre, has travelled to Spain in an attempt to end the impasse over Alberto Morenos proposed transfer from Sevilla and finalise Javier Manquillos move to Anfield.The Anfield club made an offer worth up to £16m for Moreno earlier this summer but Sevilla have held firm on their £20m valuation of the 22-year-old left-back. That led Liverpool to consider alternative targets Ryan Bertrand and Ben Davies, who have since joined Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur respectively, while keeping their offer on the table for Moreno, the manager Brendan Rodgerss first-choice option. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 14:50:17 GMT)

The Joy of Six: the ups and downs of football chairmen and owners
From oil-rich oligarchs to poetic patriachs, those at the business end of football are often seen as visionaries or less so Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 09:33:44 GMT)

10 to watch for in Rio: Britons who could shine at the 2016 Olympics
Athletes whose performances at the Commonwealth Games suggest they could be medal contenders in Brazil Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:28:00 GMT)

Liam Plunkett ready for England recall in fourth Test against India
Peter Moores: paceman was rested for third Test against India Recall likely to capitalise on lively Old Trafford pitchEngland are ready to unleash Liam Plunkett next week at Old Trafford, the quickest, bounciest Test pitch of the summer so far in support, rather than instead, of Jimmy Anderson.The Lancastrians reprieve can only represent a major blow to India, and England will hope recalling Plunkett after a breather in Southampton will help them put the boot in. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:27:00 GMT)

The sports quiz of the week: Ali, transfers and Commonwealth Games
If you have been watching the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, stay on top of transfer news and follow sports memorabilia auctions, you will do well in this week's quiz Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 14:39:28 GMT)

Nicola Adams goes for a golden first in Commonwealth Games boxing ring
Adams outpoints Mandy Bujold of Canada in semis Northern Irelands Michaela Walsh awaits in flyweight final Adams: Im just hoping my A-game is better than hersEven at 31, Nicola Adams the girl with the dazzling feet and Beverly Hills smile is chasing firsts. She was the first woman to represent England in boxing. The first English woman to win a medal at a major international boxing tournament. The first woman to win Olympic boxing gold at London 2012. And, on Saturday, she should become the first woman to win a Commonwealth Games title.Adams booked her place in the 51kg flyweight final with a unanimous, if scraggy, points victory over Canadas Mandy Bujold. Usually Adams is a boxing multilinguist, fluent on front foot and back, but she found Bujolds awkward bobbing style tricky to comprehend. Only in flashes, in the first round and at the end of the third, did she connect with any consistency but the result was rarely in doubt. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 13:25:48 GMT)

Premier League pilgrims preaching to the converted in United States
Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal have been in the United States this summer and demand among the public is high, providing an alternative to traditional American sportsCarlos Sepulveda is a 28-year-old LA Galaxy fan who has just watched his team suffer a 7-0 hiding by Manchester United at Pasadenas Rose Bowl.He paid $115 (£67) to be one of an 86,432 crowd who were eager to watch what was, essentially, a meaningless friendly, though with tickets reaching a scarcely believable $433.59 the cheapest was $35 Sepulveda believes seeing Wayne Rooney and company compensated. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:43:49 GMT)

20 of the best goals of the month: Bale, Rooney, Sterling and Ibrahimovic
Featuring blasters, zigzagging dribbles and halfway-line lobs from training camps, summer leagues and pre-season friendlies Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 09:00:03 GMT)

Premier League 2014-15 statistical previews: Arsenal to Manchester City
In the first half of their season previews, WhoScored analyse Arsenal with Alexis Sánchez, Chelsea with Diego Costa and predict how Leicester and Burnley will fare in the top flight Having ended their barren run for a trophy with FA Cup glory back in May, Arsenal will now look to build on that and not endure another stint without domestic success. Fans debate whether the last decade has been a success for a club in their financial situation but Arsène Wenger is now competing with the transfer markets power-players. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 10:33:44 GMT)

Commonwealth Games 2014: Sierra Leone cyclist reported missing
Mohamed Tholley may be fearful of return to homeland team Team-mate Moses Sesay found not to have Ebola after testsA cyclist from Sierra Leones Commonwealth Games team is reported to have gone missing just days after his team-mate was tested for the Ebola virus.The teams mountain bike champion Mohamed Tholley was due to compete in the time trial in Glasgow on Thursday but failed to turn up, according to a report in the Telegraph. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:24:17 GMT)

Alastair Cook basks in England victory despite cloud over Jimmy Anderson
Anderson admits to being upset over threat of ban The only thing on my mind is to take wickets and win games Mike Selveys third Test match report Vic Marks on Moeen Alis great dayAlastair Cook refused to let the threat of suspension hanging over Jimmy Anderson dilute his joy after Moeen Ali spun England to their first Test win for almost a year to square the series against India.Moeen, who had found himself at the centre of controversy on the second day for batting in Save Gaza and Free Palestine wristbands, took the last four wickets to earn figures of six for 67, the best by an England spinner for more than two years, as India slid to 178 all out and a crushing 266-run defeat. Continue reading...
(Thu, 31 Jul 2014 16:24:08 GMT)

Ruud van Nistelrooy named Holland assistant coach under Guus Hiddink
Ex-Manchester United striker to work alongside Danny Blind Louis van Gaals assistant Patrick Kluivert departsRuud van Nistelrooy has been named as one of Guus Hiddinks assistant coaches with the Holland national team, the Dutch football association said on Friday.The former Manchester United and Real Madrid striker, who scored 35 goals in 70 internationals for his country, will work alongside Danny Blind, who will take over from Hiddink in 2018 in a predetermined succession plan. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 10:49:38 GMT)

Brede Hangeland signs Crystal Palace contract after leaving Fulham
Norway centre-half agrees one-year deal at Selhurst Park Fulham sign Bulgarias Nikolay Bodurov as replacementCrystal Palace have announced the signing of the former Fulham captain Brede Hangeland on a one-year contract.The 33-year-old Norway internationals six-and-a-half year stay at Craven Cottage came to an end after they decided not to offer the defender a new deal following their relegation from the Premier League. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 12:38:57 GMT)

Waless Rhys Williams to join London Broncos after year in Australia
Williams joins from Central Queensland Capras Joey Grima: Rhys will add some pace to our back lineRelegated London Broncos have signed the Wales three-quarter Rhys Williams on a two-year deal from next season.Williams, 24, made 29 appearances for Warrington from 2010-13 when he also had loan spells at Crusaders, Castleford and Salford, and is spending this season playing for Central Queensland Capras in the Intrust Super Cup in Australia. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 09:50:10 GMT)

Dani Osvaldo due for Internazionale medical as Southampton exodus grows
Italy striker set for loan with £5.6m option to buy Osvaldo scored three goals in 13 Southampton gamesDani Osvaldo is due for a medical at Internazionale as the exodus of players from Southampton continues, according to reports in Italy.Gazzetta dello Sport say the 28-year-old will join Inter on an initial six-month loan deal with and a £5.6m option to buy next summer. The two clubs have agreed the terms of the transfer and Osvaldo will fly to Italy from Argentina in the next couple of days to take his medical. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 09:22:23 GMT)

Clément Grenier denies he missed Lyon training to force Newcastle move
France midfielder claims he had an injury I have no problem with Lyon there is no controversyClément Grenier has denied reports suggesting he missed a training session in an effort to force a move from Lyon, insisting he is happy to stay with the French side.Newcastle United have been linked with a move for the France international midfielder, who has claimed he has a knock and is not seeking a move. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 10:17:45 GMT)

What are the weirdest lyrics of all time?
The Killers have topped a survey which lists the most nonsensical lyrics of all time. But arent there more avant-garde examples out there? Let us knowWho would have thought it, Mormon stadium rock band The Killers are the weirdest band in the world. Well, at least their lyrics are said to be: the groups 2008 single has been named the possessor of the oddest phrase in music - are we human or are we dancer? - beating those other eccentric wordsmiths such as Black Eyed Peas, Lionel Richie and Taylor Swift.The survey, set up by streaming service Blinkbox, quizzed 2,000 adults about the most bamboozling phrases in song. Managing director Mark Bennett said: Its true that song lyrics are sometimes as crazy as a box of frogs, but then thats show business. It would be a really boring world if everything was logical and made sense. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 14:39:34 GMT)

Quiz: which fashion trends are real and which are fake?
Forget normcore a whole host of obscure, weird and probably fleeting new trends are now in fashion. Here are 10! But can you guess which of them are real, and which we made up? Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:02:00 GMT)

Lollapalooza livestream: Arctic Monkeys, Outkast and Kings of Leon
For the next three nights, were livestreaming Lollapalooza from Chicago, in conjunction with Red Bull TV. The music starts at 8pm BST on Friday nightSee our picks for the weekend and the full broadcast schedule hereAll this weekend, we are livestreaming Lollapalooza from Chicago, in association with Red Bull TV. All through Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights you can see the best bits on three channels within our player if one act doesnt tickle your fancy, just switch over to another one, or watch some of the video on demand thats available all weekend. The live music kicks off from 8pm BST/3pm ET on Friday night, and continues till the end of the weekend. Among the shows youll be able to watch are: Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:34:56 GMT)

Orlando Bloom v Justin Bieber: history's most pathetic celebrity scuffle
Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber engaged in embarrassing fisticuffs earlier this week over Miranda Kerr, but what they're really fighting for is their waning careersIt's the question that has divided the world. Permanently destroyed friendships. Condemned families to generations of icily silent Christmas dinners together. The question, the all-important question, is this: are you Team Orlando Bloom or Team Justin Bieber?After gossip site TMZ released a grainy, rubbernecking video of Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber engaging in some minor-level fisticuffs at a restaurant in Ibiza this week, people have been lining up to proudly state their allegiances. On Team Bloom is James Franco, who came out in support of his fellow actor on the US satire show The Colbert Report this week; and Leonardo DiCaprio, who allegedly cheered Bloom on from his table inside the restaurant. And on Team Bieber is ... Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:41:00 GMT)

Bean feast: Yotam Ottolenghi's french bean, broad bean and runner bean recipes
Summer is a time when we can all be full of beans, be they french, runner or broadThere are many reasons to be full of summer beans. If it's elegance and ease you're after, long french or fine green beans take just minutes to cook and require no chopping, podding or shelling. If it's something more rustic and robust you're after, runner beans are the answer: as well as being the essence of summer, they are also resilient enough to take on heaps of flavour when slow-cooked and still hold their shape and freshness. For sheer vibrancy and versatility, though, I always go for broad beans. Sure, they require a bit of work, but once you have your bowl of jewel-like grass-green beans, the options open to you are many. Leave them whole in a herb-packed frittata or salad they look stunning alongside thin slices of pink radishes and a few crushed pink peppercorns or crush into fritters, or mash with lemon juice, olive oil and garlic to spread on bruschetta, or blitz in a yoghurt and broad bean dip. And dried, they become the fava beans we enjoy all year round. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 20:00:00 GMT)

Finger-lickin' good: Mary-Ellen McTague's meaty barbecue recipes
Barbecue recipes to please a crowd, from jerk pork and barbecued sardines to buffalo wings and tips for making your own burgersSome of you may be experiencing a kind of barbecue ennui by now, but where I live in the shadow of the Pennines, there are usually only five days a year when we can have a barbecue without getting very cold, very wet, or both. So be grateful. Anyway, I'm certainly not done with barbecues for 2014, not least because I need to claw back some points after my restaurant manager thrashed me in the barbecue stakes the other day.If you're having a load of people round, start the day before and get as much as you can chopped, marinated and barbecue-ready; it also helps to plan a mixture of dishes to cook on the barbecue and in the oven. As for salads and sides, slaws are easy and always go down well; and try serving iceberg, Chinese leaf or green cabbage leaves instead of rolls and buns all sorts of barbecued fish and meat are great rolled up in something green and crunchy. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 20:00:00 GMT)

Are more people getting drunk and disorderly on planes?
This week saw a drunk passenger attack cabin crew with her prosthetic leg and even Kate Moss boarding her flight looking worse for wear. With drunken in-flight incidents on the rise, one airline has taken actionIn one of the more bizarre stories to make the news this week, a flight to Edinburgh was forced to make a diversion after a drunk passenger attacked cabin crew with her prosthetic leg. While this incident had a particularly surreal twist the 48-year-old woman demanded cigarettes and a parachute before advancing on staff with her improvised weapon intoxicated passengers are not an uncommon occurrence in the skies.Earlier this month a passenger on a Ryanair flight attempted to open the exit door after mistaking it for the toilet, which was the same excuse used by an Australian passenger in April who caused a hijack scare on a Virgin plane after banging on the cockpit door. And who can forget the time distinguished French actor Gerard Depardieu relieved himself in the aisle after being refused access to the lavatory before take off? Even Kate Moss was spotted looking a little shaky when she boarded a flight to Turkey on Monday. One could be forgiven for thinking that on any given flight, the crew are the only sober people on board. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:54:33 GMT)

Siesta app comes to custom's rescue as Spaniards lose the urge to snooze
SiestApp promises to leave users more rested than after a normal nap as figures show only 10% of Spaniards find time for a siestaThe siesta, arguably the most famous of Spanish traditions, has gone hi-tech.A group based in Spain has developed an app that they say blends years of tradition with science, promising to leave users more rested than from a normal nap. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:36:05 GMT)

Indian parliament hires monkey impersonators to restore order
Simian scarers deployed in government buildings to police primates who harass bureaucrats by stealing files and foodIndia's new government won an overwhelming mandate in the recent elections, and now it has taken on another parliamentary foe: marauding monkeys.India's housing and urban development minister, Venkaiah Naidu, told MPs that 40 professional monkey impersonators would be deployed around government buildings to police the cheeky rhesus macaque monkeys who regularly trespass in the corridors of power, terrorising senior bureaucrats, stealing files and snatching food. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 12:03:53 GMT)

How to dress: palm prints
'I say fall hard for the palm just like you might for the waiter at the holiday resort'Fashion is sometimes like romance there are the long-term, stable relationships, the ones you can relax with, such  as your favourite pair of jeans or a classic trench coat. And then there are the summer flings fun, exciting, but with a best-before date, after which the cracks start to show. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:30:01 GMT)

Michael Jackson Neverland Ranch expected to fetch up to $85m
King of Pop bought the California property in 1988 and installed carnival rides, an artificial lake and a zooIt was once a toy town wilderness, complete with carnival rides, artificial lake and a zoo that housed a five-tonne elephant and an orangutan named Patrick.Now Michael Jackson's famed Neverland Ranch is up for sale for the first time since it was acquired by the King of Pop in 1988 and, despite being valued at $30m (£18m) by California property experts, could sell for between $75m and $85m. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 12:50:20 GMT)

Edinburgh festival 2014 review: Men in the Cities fierce portrait of violence
Traverse, EdinburghChris Goode's solo show ties together the stories of murderered British soldier Lee Rigby and three other men in crisis, for a powerful but despairing look at masculinityTwo men drive towards British soldier Lee Rigby in Woolwich on 22 May 2013 and proceed to viciously attack him. The next morning, a father wakes from a bad dream about his son, a dream he can't remember. Simultaneously, a young gay man counts out painkillers as he meticulously plans his suicide. And a boy wakes on his 10th birthday and watches hardcore gay porn on his phone before he goes downstairs to open his presents. This is the starting point of Chris Goode's latest solo show, which weaves together fact into fiction. It shrieks with the pain of damaged masculinity, one entirely marked by the absence of women, bar the scream of an urban vixen's mating call.Goode's solo shows are often delivered with a shy smile and a humane hand that reaches out towards the audience, as if he wants to help us even as he unsettles us. But there is nothing remotely soothing about this latest piece, which offers a wide-ranging and depressing portrait of male lives in crisis, repressed emotions, damaged sons, untouched fathers, fantasy power trips and lost souls. On the cover of the published version of the play the four men appear to weep tears of blood or perhaps somebody has simply blinded them by furiously hurling red paint. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:31:46 GMT)

Nailing it: face to face with the world's top hand models
They've starred in ad campaigns for phones, cars and chocolate bars but you won't recognise them. Here, they come clean about blistered skin, cufflinks that have their own bodyguards, and why it's all about the close-up Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 12:30:00 GMT)

Put down your phone video
It's the holiday season, a time to spend with family and friends and take a break from ever-present screens. Unless, of course, you're one of the millions of phone addicts out there. In his latest song for the Guardian, Joe Stilgoe urges you to put down your phone and reconnect with the outside world Joe Stilgoe: Everyone's in love with Jennifer Lawrence Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 10:45:23 GMT)

Experience: a stranger pushed me on to train tracks
'I knew a train could approach at any moment, which left me terrified'One Friday evening in February last year, I was waiting for a train home at Clapham Junction station in London when I noticed a young man arguing with the barista at the coffee shop. It was around 9pm and I'd had a few drinks with friends after work, but I was sober enough to see that he was drunk and angry, shouting and leaning heavily against the counter.I work with children with special needs and am used to calming people down, so I decided to approach him and ask if he needed any help. But he swung round, swore at me and lunged at me. I asked him to back off, but I had to push him away three times before he walked away. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 13:00:00 GMT)

How to write the perfect out-of-office message
Leaving the office for a summer break? Heres some help on how to craft the perfect reply for days awaySummer is upon us, and with it a deluge of rain, kids on public transport, and out of office (OOO) replies. An out-of-office email is something you assume would be easy to write you know precisely its purpose and what it needs to say. But, as with colleagues leaving cards and appraisal feedback forms, its often difficult to find the exact words. Its not unfathomable that you spend more time crafting the perfect OOO than you do packing a suitcase, tidying your desk, or on the 10-hour flight to some far-flung holiday destination. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:49:15 GMT)

Does Interstellar pack the payload to launch Chris Nolan into Oscars orbit?
Latest trailer for space drama starring best actor winner Matthew McConaughey shows an awards-friendly combination of cosmic wonder and emotional gravity Christopher Nolan on Interstellar: 'It's about what it means to be human' More from Week in geekMight Interstellar be the movie that finally sees Christopher Nolan traverse the vast reaches between popular acclaim and awards season success in 2015? The British film-maker has a hugely impressive track record as a genre film-maker, and before that a purveyor of intriguing indie brainteasers, but has a mere three Oscar nominations spread over two films, Inception and Memento, to his name.Yet everything about his new space-exploration drama, the latest full-length trailer for which has just hit the web, seems to have tumbled into place just at the right moment. The Academy handed another space film, Gravity, seven prizes this year, and Interstellar's star is Matthew McConaughey, who won best actor for Aids drama Dallas Buyers Club. The supporting cast is not too shabby either, with Oscar-winners Anne Hathaway, Michael Caine and Ellen Burstyn joining nominees Jessica Chastain and John Lithgow on the credits list. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 09:06:19 GMT)

Liam Neeson: five best moments
Our pick of the stars greatest performances to date. What others deserve to be on the list?From romantic lead to Jedi Master to fantastical talking Christ-lion, Liam Neeson is an undoubted Hollywood heavyweight but not above voicing an animated raccoon, as he does in The Nut Job, released in UK cinemas this week.Heres our pick of Neesons most memorable performances to date. Dont agree with our list? Thought he was better in Batman? Tell us your favourite Liam Neeson moments in the thread below. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 12:13:47 GMT)

Peach bum pants crack the Chinese fruit market
Media in China report that vendors are dressing peaches in tiny knickers to mark the upcoming Qixi festivalHave you ever noticed that a peach looks a bit like a human bottom? Have you ever sought to draw attention to this fact by dressing a peach in a tiny pair of women's knickers? What do you mean "of course not, what a weird question"?A fruit vendor in Nanjing, China has started selling peaches wearing tiny pairs of knickers in celebration of the upcoming Qixi festival, the Chinese version of Valentine's Day. Kotaku.com reports that "the juiciest, most delicious peaches on Earth" (according to the Wall Street Journal) come from Yangshan in Wuxi, an area famous for its lingerie and garment industry, and the peaches' panties were put on "by hand" as opposed to by some kind of fruit-dressing robot. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 12:56:13 GMT)

The 10 best summer romances in film
As the mercury rises, inhibitions disappear or at least they do on film Is there a film you think is missing from the list? Leave your suggestion in the comments below and it could feature in the alternative list next week1 Red Dust Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:00:06 GMT)

Warm salads and how to make them
Part two of our salad special delves into what makes a great cooked salad the results will push some boundaries for the betterMy wife, Jemima, is in all ways a wonderful woman. All ways except, perhaps, one. She is a suspicious eater.She is suspicious of any form of gristle in meat or "bounce" as she calls it. She will dissect a lamb chop with the precision of a sushi chef cutting round the lethal ovaries of the puffer fish. Stews are meticulously scanned and probed, bits of potential bounce fished out and arranged in a neat trail around the rim of her plate. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:30:00 GMT)

Quiz: name the city from the comedy
Think you know your city comedies? Based on the pictures, tell us where these TV and film classics are set Visited any locations from these comedies? Share your photos How American sitcoms depict US cities What makes Britain laugh? A city by city guide Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:17:00 GMT)

The daily quiz: all about Yorkshire
In our weekly reader-set quiz, Chris Bailey celebrates Yorkshire day with 10 questions about God's own county Follow @GuardianQuiz on Twitter for daily notifications Would you like to set the quiz? Email 10 questions to daily.quiz@theguardian.com along with your name, and they may be used in the weekly Friday readers' edition Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 04:45:00 GMT)

The Inbetweeners Q&A  post your questions now!
What with The Inbetweeners 2 coming out on 6 August, weve rounded up its stars to get knee deep in... your questions. Join them at 2.15pm BST on Tuesday 5 August 10.43am BST Since it first hit TV screens in 2008, The Inbetweeners has become a beloved British comedy thanks to its quartet of clueless and mostly virginal suburban lads. Their travails were as muscle-spasmingly embarrassing as they were familiar, from driving crap cars and failing to chirpse girls to masturbating in an old peoples home (ok, we never did that last one). Even their influence on our lexicon has been profound, with clunge, briefcase wanker and fwend! all still happily chanted.Their success cleared the way for a film in 2011, in which their hapless exploits were transplanted intact to the Med and it was a massive success, grossing over £50m worldwide. So here comes a sequel, with the boys heading to Australia for gap year misadventures. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 09:43:19 GMT)

Fear and violence in transgender Baltimore: 'It's scary trusting anyone'
The murder of two African American women in the span of six weeks has left an already marginalised community on edgeThere is nothing in the alleyway off Garrison Boulevard, in north-west Baltimore, to mark the spot where Mia Henderson was struck down earlier this month, some time in the lonely hours between 2am and 6am. The crime scene tape has been removed, the blood washed away, and nothing has been left in its place to honour her memory.When other folk are killed, you know all about it, said Michele Moore, 31. But where are the flowers, where are the candles and cuddly toys for Mia? Where are the leaflets asking people to come forward with information? Theres none of that. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 14:58:50 GMT)

The Great Barrier Reef and the coal mine that could kill it
The Great Barrier Reef is sick. Almost half of its coral is already dead and a massive new coal mine, which was given final approval this week, will only cause further damage. This is not just an issue for Australia, it affects us all The Great Barrier Reef: an obituary interactiveThese are dark days for Australias Great Barrier Reef. On 29 July, the last major regulatory hurdle facing the development of Australias largest coal mine was removed by Greg Hunt, minister for the environment. The Carmichael coal mine, owned by Indias Adani Group, will cover 200 sq km and produce 60m tonnes of coal a year enough to supply electricity for 100 million people. Located in Queenslands Galilee Basin, 400km inland from the reef, it will require a major rail line, which is yet to receive final approval, to transport the coal, which must then be loaded on to ships at the ports of Hay Point and Abbot Point, near Gladstone on the Queensland coast, adjacent to the southern section of the reef. Both ports require dredging and expansion to manage the increased volume of shipping. Once aboard, the coal must be shipped safely through the coral labyrinth that is the Great Barrier Reef, and on to India, where it will be burned in great coal-fired power plants.The proposed development will affect the reef at just about every stage. Indeed, so vast is the projects reach that it is best thought of not as an Australian, or even an Australian-Indian project, but one of global impact and significance. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:00:13 GMT)

Genetic disorders: 'It is devastating to watch your child lose every ability'
Breakthrough genomics project will receive £3m public and private funding as announced by David CameronLewis was fine until the age of two-and-a-half. A lively toddler, brilliant at sports, he gave his parents no cause for concern. But then began a decline that was both swift and brutal. At first he began to limp. Then one morning his legs gave way. He began to have fits. Six months later he was unable to move. He lost the ability to speak. He couldn't eat. He couldn't stand, or sit, or even hold up his head.Cared for in hospital, and fed through a tube, Lewis was subjected to a battery of checks. When each came back negative, doctors referred him for more invasive tests. There were scans too. Time and again they came back with the same answer: there was nothing wrong with the boy. Very clearly, there was. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 19:08:35 GMT)

Rise of the drones has police and regulators scrambling to catch up
Technology and mass production have made unmanned aircraft widely available but some say alarm at their use is exaggeratedWardens at Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopsville, South Carolina, were taken aback a few weeks ago when they conducted a routine sweep of the prison grounds. They discovered quantities of marijuana, cigarettes and cellphones scattered among the bushes in the no mans land that surrounds the maximum-security institution.The guards were even more astonished to find in the middle of the stash of contraband a small, lightweight object, with propellers attached. Closer inspection revealed the item to be an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), better known as a drone, whose operators had evidently made an audacious attempt to breach the prison walls that had come unstuck when it crash-landed. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:50:08 GMT)

The western front in 1917-1919 and now interactive
Bomb damage in Paris, the Meuse-Argonne offensive by US troops, the destruction of Ypres and the creation of the Cenotaph in London ... archive photographs of significant events of the first world war in Belgium, France, Ireland and England are matched with the locations today. This is the second of a two-part series, focusing on the years 1917-19. Click here for part one, which shows life on the western front from 1914-1916 Photography then and now lets you move through time by tapping or clicking on a historic image to reveal the modern view. You can drag or swipe to control the speed of the transformation Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 08:55:12 GMT)

Mexico's machismo culture has forced me to change the way I dress
Being harassed on the streets is one end of the spectrum of violence against women in a country where thousands are raped or murdered every yearIve never been someone who tries on multiple outfits before deciding what to wear in the morning. I do like clothes but Im not obsessed by them, at least I wasnt until I moved to Mexico City last year.I havent suddenly become a fashionista, far from it, but living in Mexico means enduring deep-rooted machismo attitudes - and this has affected the way I dress. Far too many men consider it perfectly acceptable, their right in fact, to whistle, leer, follow and grope women on the streets and on public transport. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:31:50 GMT)

Interior design ideas: a glimpse inside gallery owner Jimi Lee's white home
Gallery owner Jimi Lee proves that a white home doesn't have to be cold or clinical, finds Rachel Leedham Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:30:00 GMT)

It's time energy policy hums to a different tune
Why is the UK government seeking to exploit more fossil fuels when we cant burn what we already know is there?During the filming of Dr Strangelove, Stanley Kubricks satire on nuclear armageddon, Kubrick is supposed to have turned to its star, Peter Sellers, and asked: Have you ever heard of mutually assured destruction? Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:48:24 GMT)

Turning a slate quarry green: 40 years of Centre for Alternative Technology
Welsh hippies ushered in an era of sustainable living well before the world had woken up to climate change Hippies in a slate quarry in Wales are celebrating four decades of green revolution this weekend, having transformed the character of a local town, pioneered new energy technologies and constructed a water-powered railway.The Centre for Alternative Technology (Cat) near Machynlleth also created hundreds of jobs and a tourist attraction that draws in around 70,000 visitors a year. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 04:30:29 GMT)

Ten things we learned this week
From the Ebola outbreak in western Africa to Boris Johnsons sobriety tags, a roundup of the weeks newsThe death toll in Gaza has topped 1,400Bolt might think the Commonwealth Games are a bit shitI'm waking up to this nonsense..journalist please don't create lies to make headlines Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:57:16 GMT)

How Lollapalooza lost its special something
What was once a celebration of all things rock has been transformed into an everyman festival, and thats pretty boringLollapalooza 2014: A day-by-day guide to the highlightsThe stars and the bands and the corporations have aligned for another pitch-perfect Lollapalooza. Now in its seventh year as a permanent Chicago festival, the once-traveling event grew from a nostalgic glimmer of the 90s to an unbeatable force that showcases Chicagos beauty. It has also become something of a bore. Thats not to say its a disappointment. I especially love Perrys stage, where many emerging house and EDM producers and performers found curious and enthusiastic fans eager to dance. Festival organizers were well ahead of the curve in that regard. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 13:31:01 GMT)

Why spiders may be the human races ultimate spin doctors
Arachnids are essential for biodiversity and we are only starting to understand the medical and scientific benefits they could bringMost ecologists talk about saving the worlds wildlife from the animals perspective, which is a public relations mistake. Humans one of the most wildly successful species of the Cenozoic era, which began about 65m years ago have trouble empathising with polar bears, tropical frogs and dolphins as those animals sink toward extinction. A better way is to appeal to a humans unstoppable desire to forward his own self-interest. This is how Norman Platnick talks about spider conservation.If spiders disappeared, we would face famine, says Platnick, who studies arachnids at New Yorks American Museum of Natural History, where a live spider exhibit debuted last month. Spiders are primary controllers of insects. Without spiders, all of our crops would be consumed by those pests. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 13:41:58 GMT)

Syrian city of Homs shows signs of life amid moonscape of devastation
Special report: Ian Black finds whispers of normality, stability and a few returning residents in ex-rebel bastion laid siege by Assad forces for two years Adnan Azzam has his work cut out. Every room in his second-floor apartment in the old city of Homs bears the scars of war: theres a shell hole in the corner of the childrens bedroom and drawers are missing from the glass-fronted cabinets in the ornate salon. They were chopped up for firewood by the rebels who occupied the flat, did their cooking on the stairwell and left scorch marks on the whitewashed wall.On the street outside, a poster warns returning residents to beware if they come across any of the many kinds of munitions and weapons mortar bombs, rockets, grenades that were used in the vicious battle for Syrias third-largest city and the capital of the revolution that tried and has failed to topple President Bashar al-Assad. Keep away, do not touch and inform others if you see any of these, it urges. Continue reading...
(Thu, 31 Jul 2014 16:34:20 GMT)

The LGBT, feminist and student voices behind Uruguay's radical reforms
From legalising abortion to transsexual rights, marginalised groups have united to become a formidable force for changeOne tiny country has been blazing a liberal trail across Latin America. In the past six years, Uruguay has introduced ground-breaking legislation on abortion, drugs, transsexual rights, and same-sex marriage and adoption. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 11:43:02 GMT)

Brighton's cycle shed crackdown highlights car-centric officialdom
The Green-run council has been busy telling people to remove bike sheds from their front gardens and it is not the only oneFor some years Kieran Barnard and his family have had a small bike store in the front garden of their terraced house in Brighton. Its the one you can see in the picture compact and unobtrusive, partly hidden by a garden wall and a bush. Its even painted a pleasant shade of blue.It means Barnard, his wife Claudia and their two young sons dont have to carry their sometimes muddy, greasy bikes through the home to keep them safely. This in turn means they ride the bikes more often.This time of year its annoying but do-able, the bikes arent that dirty. But when it gets into winter itll become a lot more difficult if you have to carry a muddy bike through the house.We can categorically state with 100% certainty that no politicians from any party have been involved in initiating any enforcement actions over sheds in front gardens.We would expect some people to be disappointed that they cannot have a shed in their front garden but its unfair to characterise officials as unhelpful. This planning authority, like most in the country, is open about its view that sheds in front gardens ruin the street scene and were unlikely to help people do that. Enforcement is always a matter of judgment with regard to existing structures; a local planning authority needs to consider whether it is expedient and in the public interest to take enforcement action.Where permitted development rights do not exist a householder can still apply for planning permission. Planning guidance tells councils to be supportive of the need for bike storage provided it is designed in a discreet way that does not harm visual amenity.The judgment in our own planning application wasnt really to do with national legislation, it seemed a personal judgment by the planning officer saying, We think the impact on the street scene outweighs the sustainable transport implications Im a Guardian reader, Im pretty well disposed towards the Greens. But this, to me, isnt a question of political ideology, its about competence. If they had any control over the council they were running they would be able to do something about this issue. As it stands theyre washing their hands of it.We feel that the approach the planning office is taking is undermining the Green councils own sustainable transport strategy. Brighton has made huge strides in recent years towards encouraging green transportation and it is a great shame that the council planners have adopted this approach. No, because its not possible to distinguish between bike sheds and any other shed. The only way to do so would be with a bizarre and expensive regime involving council officials going round inspecting the contents of peoples sheds to ensure they were only used for bikes. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 08:58:03 GMT)

A movie miracle: how Hollywood found religion
With almighty ticket sales for Christian films from Noah to Heaven is for Real, 2014 could be the year of the Bible movie but Hollywood and holiness are unlikely bedfellowsFaith films perform a marketing miracleThe Guardians review of Heaven is for RealBig news from the box office: some people released some Christian-themed movies that werent completely terrible. The terribleness of Christian movies is, of course, an article of faith among film critics, who reserve for them their most damning barbs (doesnt even meet the standards of decent propaganda; doesnt belong in a theatre). On Metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes, they garner basement-level scores rivalled only by torture porn and holocaust-exploitation flicks. But not this year, which has seen box-office success for studio-backed movies such as Son of God ($67m since its debut in late February), Darren Aronofskys Noah ($359m), Gods Not Dead ($60m), Heaven is for Real ($91m), and, soon Ridley Scotts retelling of the story of Moses, Exodus. In October, we can look forward to Left Behind, a remake of a 2002 end-of-days conspiracy thriller starring Nicolas Cage. Also in the offing: a star-studded cast in the long-awaited prequel to The Passion of the Christ (Mary, Mother of Christ) and a Cain and Abel film set to star Will Smith. Some have christened this year of the Bible movie.Having not just one do so well is a big deal, but having so many Heaven is for Real, Gods Not Dead and Son of God all come along and do well in the space of this year is unprecedented, says Shawn Robbins, an analyst at boxoffice.com. No doubt about it, Hollywood has been caught napping. He attributes a big part of this to social media. Thirty years ago you had network television, trying to appeal to everyone. Now you can reach a niche audience with much greater ease. They have these grassroots marketing campaigns for faith-based movies that start with churchgoers who are looking for something theyre not getting from the movie theatre. And the better they do, the more attention theyre getting from the studios. Continue reading...
(Thu, 31 Jul 2014 17:30:16 GMT)

Ebola rages in Africa as west agonises over ethics of vaccine and drug testing
If there are to be vaccines and drugs against Ebola, trials in outbreaks will have to be doneIn 2002, scientists writing in a leading American medical journal discussed the possibility that the Ebola virus could be used in a biochemical weapon. It would be technically difficult and unlikely to cause mass destruction because those infected quickly die and the virus is not as transmissible as many assume. But, the scientists warned, if it could be done, there would be no protection. No vaccine or drug treatment exists.They were writing in the Journal of the American Medical Association in the wake of 9/11 and the subsequent anthrax attacks in New York. Since then, fear of viruses raining out of US skies has diminished and so has any sense of urgency over the development of vaccines or treatment for a disease that manifests itself in unpredictable outbreaks and kills relatively small numbers of people in remote parts of Africa. Continue reading...
(Thu, 31 Jul 2014 19:16:57 GMT)

Shared brain activity predicts audience preferences
Similarities in the brain responses of small groups of people may predict the popularity of a product within the wider populationNeuromarketing firms claim that brain scanning technology can be used to evaluate consumers responses to products and predict which ones they prefer, but so far most of these claims are hugely exaggerated. New research published in the journal Nature Communications adding some hope to the neuromarketing hype, by showing that the brain activity shared by small groups of people in response to film clips can accurately predict how popular those clips will be among larger groups. Continue reading...
(Thu, 31 Jul 2014 20:45:22 GMT)

Russell Brand takes on Sean Hannity in Gaza spat
Row begins after British comedian and actor calls Fox News presenter a terrorist over his interviewing style Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:39:39 GMT)

Lynsey Sharp looking to overcome injury and impress at Glasgow 2014
The Scottish athlete has been hampered by a lingering infection but remains upbeat and hopeful of adding to her familys collection of Commonwealth Games medals this summer Continue reading...
(Sun, 20 Jul 2014 12:48:25 GMT)

Gaza crisis: Obama sees 'very hard' path 'to put a ceasefire back together' - as it happened
President says Israeli soldier needs to be unconditionally releasedCeasefire crumbles as Israeli army reports soldier suspected capturedObama: innocent civilians in Gaza...have to weigh on our conscienceIsrael resumes shelling of Rafah, killing at least 62Two Israeli soldiers killed in southern Gaza early FridayRead the latest blog summary Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 21:57:51 GMT)

Amazon tribe makes 'first contact' with outside world video
Footage released by Brazil's National Indian Foundation shows isolated indigenous people coming forward for outside assistance after fleeing attacks in Peru. The people, whose language is recognised as part of the Pano linguistic group, reportedly crossed the border after coming under pressure from illegal logging and drug trafficking at home Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 08:38:22 GMT)

Turkish women defy deputy PM with laughter
Bülent Arinç said women should not laugh in public, prompting backlash and highlighting state of women's rights in Turkey Continue reading...
(Wed, 30 Jul 2014 19:15:04 GMT)

I was Victoria Beckhams ghost
The fascination with ghostwriters such as Andrew Crofts is a proxy for our obsession with fame. But being famous is boring Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:39:32 GMT)

Usain Bolt denies calling Glasgows 2014 Commonwealth Games a bit shit
Bolt dismisses reports of his comments as nonsense The Times stands by claims 100% Continue reading...
(Wed, 30 Jul 2014 23:22:00 GMT)

Commonwealth Games 2014: highlights and schedule for day nine in Glasgow
Usain Bolt finally takes to the track in the 4x100m relay heats Tom Daley begins his campaign in the synchro 10m platform Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 07:00:01 GMT)

The new breed of shareholder activist: taking on the big boys at the AGM
Its a David and Goliath struggle: buying a single share and turning up at corporate AGMs to grill bosses over low pay, inflated bonuses and business ethics. They may not get straight answers, but theres a victory in just asking the questionsIt was training night at the offices of Share Action in Druid Street, south-east London, and a man named Jo Beardsmore was preparing would-be activists to take on some of the big corporations at their own annual general meetings (AGMs). Jo was telling everybody what to expect: a lot of shareholders turn up just to get the free stuff. You see people decanting jugs of orange juice into their water bottles. (In fact, I knew about this because I had an uncle who, before he died, used to buy 10 shares in each major brewery and give one to each of his nine best friends, then theyd all go to the AGM for a kind of booze hounds gala. The salient part of that sentence is before he died.)In the 1980s, people would buy one share to stage a protest, and for a while it was not unusual for the board to sit behind a Perspex screen in case people tried to egg them. Today, shareholder action is much more strategic. You dont just buy a share, bowl up with an egg and hope for the best. This training, complete with a role play at the end, basically said: if you want to do this, do it right. Read the company report, or, if you dont have time, stick stickers in it to make it look as if you have. Plan and rehearse your question. Make it count. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 16:03:25 GMT)

Israel must open talks with Hamas
In Gaza, neither sides weapons will break the others resolve. Only a political approach can bring lasting peaceThe daily images of human torment in Gaza have been harrowing and heartbreaking. More than 1,000 Palestinian civilians have been killed. Were it not for international aid rations, half the population would be without food. Hundreds of thousands of men, women and children are seeking shelter in UN schools and even these offer little safety.It is difficult to deny that Israels military action appears disproportionate and, combined with the Gaza blockade, is resulting in the collective suffering of the Palestinian people. Hamas cannot escape blame either. By hiding among the civilian population and stashing weapons in schools and mosques, it has shown it is willing to sacrifice its own people for military advantage. It has spent large sums on a sophisticated network of tunnels through which to terrorise Israeli civilians money that could have gone on schools, houses and clinics for the Palestinian people. Continue reading...
(Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:56:01 GMT)

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