Russian rage is spiralling out of control

There isn’t much choice on Russian TV any more: you can flick between war hysteria, bloodlust or sanguinary propaganda. Before Russia invaded, many analysts were sceptical of claims of imminent war precisely because there hadn’t been a media onslaught to... Read more

France’s populist revolt is coming

What did they mean by that? The French public has delivered a first-round result in their presidential election that leaves political nerds unable to reach a consensus about where events are likely to go from here. On the one hand,... Read more

Stubborn and divided, the French Left risk a Marine Le Pen victory

Over dinner last month, I asked a French colleague what his prediction was for his country’s presidential election. He shrugged in a delightfully Gallic fashion and said simply: “Macron.” That was the assumption made by most observers until relatively recently;... Read more

How Brexit ushered in a golden age of British-Eastern European relations

If Boris Johnson’s visit to Kyiv at the weekend was a surprise for most of us, it came as a monumental shock to those who said Brexit would doom the UK to diplomatic irrelevance. Since the 2016 vote, breathless Remainers... Read more

Only a real killjoy would see the cricket tea as a hazard

Whatever next. Cricket’s tea interval is under serious threat because of the fear that players’ allergies could be awakened by sandwiches, scones, cakes or even, I suppose, the good old cuppa. It is a bit like suggesting that Ian Botham,... Read more

Macron has failed on his own terms

There is a third contender in the second round of the French election, and it might triumph over both Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron. It’s called apathy, and it’s what a great many people in France feel when asked... Read more

France should take a leaf out of Brexit Britain’s book 

Britain, as you’ll know from watching Channel 4 (soon to be sold to Pizza Hut), is a right-wing theme park, the most absurd and irrelevant country in the world. It sounds tremendous fun, though two things cast doubt on the... Read more

Non-doms: bad politics, but good policy

A simple point about “non-doms” is often missed. They exist because the Treasury, under Labour and Conservative governments alike, has calculated that they bring in more tax than if they did not exist. This is because non-dom status encourages more... Read more

Dear Richard Madeley: ‘I can’t get my mother-in-law out of my house’

Dear Richard,  I have been very happily married for six years and we have two beautiful young daughters. My wife is extremely close to her mother and I get on very well with her too. My mother-in-law helps enormously with... Read more

Air fryers vs deep fat fryers — which are the best to buy?

Roast potatoes Cut floury potatoes into chunks and parboil then shake them; allow to dry and drizzle with a little oil. Air-fry for about 25 minutes on the highest setting, turning twice, until golden and crisp. Leftovers As long as... Read more

Is it serum then moisturiser or the other way around? The ultimate skincare routine guide

We spend hours analysing online product reviews, browsing department store beauty counters and relying on friends’ advice to decipher what’s worth splurging on when it comes to our skincare routine. But once bought, knowing the correct order to use our... Read more

How midlife women can wear sleeveless dresses with confidence – and not a bingo wing in sight

Paula Rowan, an Irish based glove obsessive who makes them traditionally, in Italy, says demand has never been higher. Working with the softest leathers, Rowan’s turning gloves into an art form, or at the very least, the new bag –... Read more

Ukraine afternoon briefing: Five developments as Russia ‘looks to treble Donbas forces’

Good evening. Russia is building up its forces for a renewed assault on Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions, Ukraine’s defence ministry said on Monday. “We forecast that active combat will begin in these areas in the nearest time,” defence... Read more

Monday evening UK news briefing: How Marine Le Pen could win in France

For the French press, the results show the changing political landscape in the country. “Rematch, advantage Macron”, headlined Le Parisien – everything has changed, except “them”.  The newspaper added that the “consequences of this first round on French political life... Read more

Khan supporters protest in Pakistan as Sharif tipped to take over

Imran Khan’s toppling as leader of Pakistan sparked massive demonstrations on Sunday night. The former cricketer was turfed out of office on Sunday morning after a week of political turmoil in which he had ultimately failed to dodge an opposition... Read more

Shehbaz Sharif appointed Pakistan’s new prime minister

Minimum wage and rural development promised Mr Sharif, who is the younger brother of Imran Khan’s predecessor, Nawaz Sharif, also announced a raft of populist measures in his speech. He promised a new minimum wage of 25,000 rupees (around £100),... Read more

Valérie Pécresse could lose €5m of her own election campaign money

Right-wing presidential candidate Valérie Pécresse risks losing €5 million (£4.2 million) of her own money after failing to reach the threshold at which the French state reimburses campaign costs. The 54-year old mustered a dismal 4.78 per cent of the... Read more

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard face off at start of blockbuster US defamation trial

The case was being held at a court in suburban Virginia, rather than in California where Mr Depp and Ms Heard both live. That was because the Washington Post’s online editions are published through servers based in Fairfax County, Virginia.... Read more

Council tax discount for opening second homes to Ukraine refugees

One Ukrainian family has had to move nine times to find a place of safety, among the 4.4 million refugees who have so far fled Ukraine, according to the survey by the UK Hosts for Ukrainian Families Support Group. One... Read more

Austrian chancellor defends ‘naive’ meeting with Vladimir Putin

An EU diplomat said the attempt to negotiate with Mr Putin was “f****** pointless”, referring to previously failed diplomatic efforts to urge the Russian president to end his invasion of Ukraine. In an attempt to reassure the bloc, Mr Nehammer... Read more

Macron heads to working-class heartland as he seeks to win over sceptical Left-wing voters

Emmanuel Macron must find the common touch to beat Marine Le Pen in France’s presidential election, aides warned on Monday as the incumbent hit industrial northern France – a working-class heartland whose electorate is deemed crucial to the April 24 runoff.... Read more

Your Covid travel questions answered: a country-by-country guide to the complex holiday rules

Germany Only open to vaccinated or recovered travellers Covid passports for everyone aged six or over Unvaccinated British 12 to 17 year olds unable to visit Entry rules for vaccinated Fully vaccinated or recovered travellers from the UK can enter... Read more

This beloved Brecon Beacons hotel has just got even better

Checking into Room 8 Luxury, of course, is subjective; all I know is that when staying in a modest, centuries-old place such as the Felin Fach Griffin in Brecon, with a long history of offering hospitality to passers-by, the sheer size... Read more

46 countries you can visit even if you’re unvaccinated

Minimal restrictions 17. Costa Rica The wildlife paradise of Costa Rica not only welcomes unvaccinated arrivals but does not require them to take a test. They must, however, buy insurance with specific cover requirements and complete an advance epidemiological information... Read more

The 15 ultimate Italian holidays, and how to do them in style

Few of us can resist a holiday in Europe’s most elegant country. Especially not those of us who dream of a nice glass of chianti on a warm evening, a sunny stroll through a broad piazza, a day of high... Read more