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The construction site of the Hong Kong to Guangzhou cross-border high speed rail link terminus, West Kowloon, Hong Kong, China, Chinese economic growth is slowing after decades of double-digit percentage expansion.

With 1.4 billion people and rapid expansion from a closed society into a major industrial power, it has always been a question of when, not if, but(...)

Blood stains are seen on the floor of a damaged classroom at Ain Jalout school that was hit by what activists said was an airstrike by forces loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad in Aleppo’s al-Ansari al-Sharqi neighbourhood. Photograph: Reuters

An air strike on a school in Syria’s northern city of Aleppo by Syrian president Bashar al-Assad’s forces killed at least 18 people yesterday, mainly (...)

A section of the Corrib gas line at Aughoose, Co Mayo. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Shell to Sea has appealed to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to raise the issue of policing the Corrib gas dispute with the Governme(...)

Ubiquitous campaign posters prior to Iraq’s parliamentary elections in Sulaimaniya, in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. Voters go to the polls today in Iraq’s first nationwide election since the withdrawal of US forces at the end of 2011. Photograph: Yahya Ahmad/Reuters

Snipers line the rooftops across Fallujah, waiting for a chance to shoot at government soldiers, should they try to invade. Homes have been wir(...)

Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri has called on Muslims to kidnap Westerners, particularly Americans, who could then be exchanged for jailed jihadists. Image: SITE Monitoring Service via Reuters TV.

Al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri has called on Muslims to kidnap Westerners, particularly Americans, who could then be exchanged for jailed jih(...)

US president Barack Obama and South Korean president Park Geun-hye inspect an honour guard during a welcoming ceremony at the presidential Blue House in Seoul yesterday. Photograph: Reuters/Kim Hong-Ji

North Korea represents a threat not just to Asia but to the United States, US president Barack Obama said yesterday, as he and South Korean pre(...)

The 3.4 per cent fall in greenhouse gas emissions in the US in 2012 has been linked  to low natural gas prices, helped by a shale gas boom and a shift from coal, a mild winter and greater efficiency in transport. Photograph:  John Giles/PA Wire

Industrialised nations’ greenhouse gas emissions fell by 1.3 per cent in 2012, led by a US decline to the lowest in almost two decades with a s(...)

OCO and Me

“It is life-changing for a young person when they realise they have the right to be heard and they are genuinely being listened to.“I arrived t(...)

Pro-Russian activists guard a smouldering roadblock outside the village of Khrestyshche near Slovyansk, Ukraine yesterday. Ukrainian officials said five militants were killed when special forces stormed the roadblocks. Photograph: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Russia has begun war games near Ukraine after denouncing as a “grave crime” Kiev’s security-service strike against pro-Moscow rebels. Ukrainian(...)

A man inside a damaged house after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Al-Maliha town, in the suburbs of Damascus today. Photograph: Badra Mamet/Reuters

UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon has demanded that the Security Council take action in Syria on violations of international law as he reported(...)

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