‘The president descended from the mountain for half an hour on Thursday evening, materialising at Nationals Park to schmooze with Democrats and Republicans at the annual congressional baseball game.’ Photograph: Aude Guerrucci/Getty Images

On Saturday mornings, I love to watch reruns of the television Western The Rifleman. Each show is a little moral fable, with Chuck Connors’s widowe(...)

US army trainers watch as an Iraqi recruit fires at a military base in Taji, Iraq.They are teaching members of the Iraqi Army, as the Iraqi government tries to recover territory lost to IS last year. Photograph: John Moore/Getty Images

The leader of Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has been seriously wounded in an air strike in western Iraq, according to reports.A source in Iraq (...)

The wreckage of a car destroyed in a blast is seen near the Central Hotel after a suicide attack in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu February 20th, 2015. Photograph: REUTERS/Feisal Omar

The death toll from a suicide attack at a hotel in the Somali capital yesterday has risen to 25 and 40 wounded, the Somali government said. A statemen(...)

  Swedish artist Lars Vilks is seen at his home in Nyhamnslage, Sweden in this file image from 2012. Photograph: AFP

Lars Vilks has long known he is a prime target. He lives with a daily threat to his life and plans his activities with precision, placing huge emphasi(...)

Men celebrate the Houthi’s intention to dissolve Yemen’s parliament. Photograph: Tyler Hicks/The New York Times

The Houthi rebels who forced Yemen’s president and cabinet to step down last month have announced that they intended to dissolve parliament and take (...)

A woman looks at television screens displaying a news report  about Japanese journalist Kenji Goto.  IS militants said on Saturday  they had killed Mr Goto. Photograph: Reuters

US president Barack Obama has led worldwide condemnation of the killing of a Japanese journalist by Islamic State (IS) militants, calling it a “heinou(...)

Midi Libre cited a local prosecutor as confirming the arrests in Montpellier and Beziers.

Four men have appeared in a French court - the first to face charges related to the Paris terror attacks that left 20 people dead, including three gun(...)

Houthi  Yemeni chant slogans during clashes near the presidential palace in Sanaa, yesterday. Photograph: Hani Mohammed/AP

A ceasefire has halted clashes near the presidential palace in Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, after Shia rebels seized control of state-run media in a move t(...)

People queue outside a Paris newsagent’s yesterday as the latest edition of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo goes on sale. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

France has begun a crackdown on hate speech, arresting 54 people for anti-Semitism and defending terrorism in the past week. In a message sent to all(...)

Kingsmill Massacre – Alan Black, the sole survivor of the massacre, in 2000 laying a floral tribute at the Bessbrook Town Hall memorial to those killed – “Atrocities like these can never be expunged from a conscience or explained away.”  –  Picture by Stephen Wilson/Pacemaker

Nuance. It was going to be my watchword for 2015. The one by which every utterance would be measured. Life is too short to muster up the pretence o(...)