Inside the Islamic State's capital: Red Bull-drinking jihadists, hungry civilians, crucifixions and air strikes

The beleaguered inhabitants of Raqqa, self-proclaimed capital of the Islamic State (Isis), are suffering widespread hunger, crippling inflation, chronic power shortages and poverty so acute that emergency soup kitchens have been set up.

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The 'War on Drugs' killed my daughter

Martha Fernback, 15, died from taking 91% pure ecstasy. Anne-Marie Cockburn is campaigning for drug legalization to spare others her ordeal

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Tony Blair 'was told of Syrian WMDs' says former intelligence chief

John Morrison, former head of defence intelligence staff, writes in Observer that Blair must have known of chemical weapons

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Actor Stephen Fry denounces UK government for not acting on Snowden revelations

Performer and Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger among speakers at conference marking first anniversary of NSA leaks

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Leader Chris Turney defends Antarctic expedition against critics of its scientific value

Chris Turney speaks of a 'growing sense of frustration over what appears to be a misrepresentation of the expedition'

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Letters detail secret punitive tactics military used on Guantánamo hunger strikers

Newly declassified papers say hunger strike at Guantánamo Bay was 'broken' by a deliberate campaign to crush detainees' spirits

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CAR: Raped, plundered and ignored

The Central African Republic is all but lawless, with just 200 police to guard 4.6m people from rebel gangs who attack women, kill men and recruit children at will. Despite repeated warnings, the international community has done little, even as arms continue to flood into the country

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Musicians' Union demands new pay deal from Spotify

As Thom Yorke pull songs from the music streaming service, the artists' union calls for Spotify to pay royalties in line with radio model

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British mosques urged to install 'panic alarms' and safe rooms

US Islamic group says British centres at greater risk than in other western country since the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby

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Revealed: How Britain tried to legitimize Batang Kali massacre

Senior British diplomats introduced an extraordinary "licence to kill" law in an attempt to legalise retrospectively the colonial-era killing of 24 villagers by UK troops in Malaysia, the Observer can reveal.

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