How algae can harvest precious metals and biofuel from mining’s toxic sludge

Groundbreaking project under way at Wheal Jane tin mine in Cornwall could have benefits worldwide

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The real-life triumphs of the gay communist behind hit UK movie 'Pride'

Friends recall 'a firecracker of a human being' as memorial fund for Mark Ashton receives more than £10,000

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UK urged by human rights groups to tell all on U.S. rendition flights to Diego Garcia

Fresh claims over use of overseas territory of Diego Garcia as secret jail for terrorist suspects

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Nightingale has best birdsong because of its complex brain, research finds

Secretive bird produces more notes than other species, according to study that sheds light on human language

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Leaked paper shows major policy split in UN on international drug war

Major international divisions over the global "war on drugs" have been revealed in a leaked draft of a UN document setting out the organisation's long-term strategy for combating illicit narcotics.

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British claim Greenwald's partner detained for acts of 'espionage' and 'terrorism'

The detention of the partner of a former Guardian journalist has triggered fresh concerns after it emerged that a key reason cited by police for holding him under terrorism powers was the belief that he was promoting a "political or ideological cause".

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Deloitte promotes Mauritius as tax haven to avoid big payouts to poor African nations

A global consultancy giant has been accused of advising big business, including UK firms, on how to avoid paying tax in some of Africa's poorest countries.

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Operation Able Art: How a 1983 American-NATO war game came close to provoking the Soviet Union into launching a nuclear attack

Former classified documents show how close the Soviet Union came to launching an attack in 1983

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U.S. pressure helps Snowden make his case for asylum: experts

As Venezuela and Nicaragua offer lifeline to whistleblower, experts say US actions are strengthening his case for safe haven

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Report: Food giants 'misleading' Asian moms in baby formula ads

Research in Pakistan finds companies giving free gifts and misleading literature to mothers and health workers

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Sale of personal gene data condemned as 'unethical and dangerous'

Critics say companies could acquire personal information that would identify NHS patients without their consent

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How cigarette smuggling fuels Africa's Islamist violence

Contrabrand tobacco is a $1bn trade in north Africa, run by extremists including Mokhtar Belmokhtar, who masterminded the attack on the Algerian gas plant. The trade is highly profitable – and very low risk. Jamie Doward investigates

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Ritalin use soars fourfold in U.K. as psychologists warn of untested drug cocktails

Prescriptions of Ritalin for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder have quadrupled in a decade, prompting fears it is being pushed on children at the expense of alternative treatments and without appreciation of long-term effects.

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'War on drugs' has failed, say Latin American leaders

Watershed summit will admit that prohibition has failed, and call for more nuanced and liberalized tactics. 

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UK 'exporting surveillance technology to repressive nations'

Fears that software similar to that which government wants to use in Britain is being sold to monitor dissidents abroad

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