WHO director general Margaret Chan said spead of the virus was ‘deeply concerning’. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

The World Health Organisation has convened an emergency committee to discuss the “explosive” spread of the Zika virus, which is linked to thousands of(...)

The Arena Carioca Olympic venues in Rio: the suitability of Brazil as host country has been questioned. Photograph: Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images

It doesn’t feel that long ago since Ronnie Delany was telling me the difference between fate and faith. Fate, he said, was when you knew something abo(...)

Former West Bank settler leader Dani Dayan.

Israel is threatening to downgrade its diplomatic relations with Brazil in protest over Brasilia’s refusal to accept former West Bank settler leader D(...)

Tensions rose last year when an Israeli foreign ministry spokesman called Brazil a ’diplomatic dwarf’ after Brasilia recalled its ambassador from Israel to protest the  military offensive in Gaza in July 2014. File photograph:  AP Photo/Hatem Moussa

Brazil’s reluctance to accept an Israeli ambassador who is a West Bank settler has set off a diplomatic crisis and led to a standoff with the Israeli (...)

Brazil’s president Dilma Rousseff (right) and vice-president Michel Temer listen to Brazil’s national anthem: but all is not harmonious between them. Photograph:  Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters

During her first term, Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff had a discreet number two in Michel Temer. Behind closed doors her 75-year old vice-presid(...)

Garzweiler opencast lignite – or brown coal – mine, operated by RWE, in Garzweiler, Germany.  Photograph: Martin Leissl/Bloomberg
Planet Business

Image of the week: Excavation at dusk Lights illuminate giant excavators as they operate at dusk at the Garzweiler opencast lignite – or brown coal(...)

Argentina’s president-elect Mauricio Macri: wants a free trade deal between Mercosur and the Pacific Alliance trade bloc of Mexico, Peru, Chile and Colombia. Photograph: Enrique Marcarian/Reuters

Mauricio Macri’s swearing-in as Argentina’s first democratically elected right-wing president takes place on Thursday amid an unedifying spat with the(...)

The same-sex marriage referendum was the most talked about topic on Facebook in Ireland in 2015, while marriage equality, including Ireland’s May referendum, was the sixth most talked about topic on Facebook in the world. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Ireland’s same-sex marriage referendum was among the Top 10 most talked about world events on Facebook in 2015, according to the social media site’s y(...)

Opposition supporters celebrate in Caracas, Venezuela, early on Monday. Venezuela’s opposition won control of the National Assembly by a landslide on Sunday, delivering a major setback to the ruling party and altering the balance of power after 17 years of socialist rule. Photograph: AP

Venezuela’s opposition trounced the ruling Socialists on Sunday to win the legislature for the first time in 16 years and gain a long-sought platform(...)

Brazil’s president Dilma Rousseff: said she was “indignant” at the move and said her administration had never practised “illicit acts”. Photograph: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Brazil’s president Dilma Rousseff must face impeachment proceedings in revenge for her party’s decision to back efforts to remove the head of the lowe(...)