Scathing EU report alleging lawbreaking piles pressure on Czech PM

Pressure on Andrej Babiš, the Czech Republic’s embattled prime minister, has intensified after an EU report concluded that numerous laws were broken to obtain European subsidies for a hotel and conference centre he owns. The union’s anti-fraud unit, Olaf, said violations that potentially broke Czech law on subsidy fraud were committed in winning a €1.67m …

The death of the best of: why Rihanna will never get her greatest hits

Like socks, a Lynx shower gel gift set and a comedian from Mock the Week’s standup on DVD, Best Of collections have always played a vital role in last-minute present-buying. Not sure what to buy that cousin you see every other year? There’s a Killers Best Of for that. How about your best friend’s new …

Generation rent: why I’ll never live in the town I grew up in

When I started this column, I thought, “Any month now, I’ll get on the property ladder.” I imagined sharing the tribulations of house-buying: the estate agents who say “compact” when they mean “claustrophobia-inducing”, and psyching out the competition at open viewings (“I hear they’re opening a sewage works near here,” I’d say loudly). That was a foolishly …

What I wore this week: corduroy | Jess Cartner-Morley

In case you’re wondering, the look I am going for here is east-coast-liberal-arts-lecturer-hosts-brunch. That is how I like my corduroy: a bit campus dreamboat, a bit arthouse cinema. Accessorised with a strong scarf game, and maybe an elbow patch; some reading material (either news or fiction but printed on actual paper) and deep conversation peppered …

Dougray Scott: ‘Mum’s parents didn’t approve of Dad. They cut off all contact’

My dad was a travelling salesman. He knew how to be tough, but he was a gentle soul, with a soft side and a lot of patience. Once I was seven, he took me on trips with him all over north Scotland. I remember those times vividly. They are some of my happiest childhood memories. I adored …

Japan Balks at Calls for New Apology to South Korea Over ‘Comfort Women’

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan in Tokyo in October. He said on Friday that a 2015 deal with South Korea to make reparations for sexual slavery in World War II “was a promise between countries,” and called a request for a further apology “unacceptable.” Behrouz Mehri/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images TOKYO — On matters …

Graham Rix and Gwyn Williams accused of racism and bullying while at Chelsea

Three former youth-team footballers at Chelsea have launched legal claims against the club after allegations that black players were subjected to horrific racism by their own coaches, including physical attacks and one instance when Graham Rix allegedly threw a cup of hot coffee in the face of one of their young prospects. Rix, then the …

Harriet Harman on exposing the pay gap: ‘This is kind of … revolutionary’

Harriet Harman is being photographed when I arrive at her south London home. As I fall to admiring her fabulously billowy skirt, she laughs and says: “Ah, well, you see, I’ve evolved beyond the sharp jacket. I don’t need to bother about looking authoritative any more, now that I’m a ‘former’. We’re now in a …