Concerns over new UN Human Rights Council members

China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Algeria and Vietnam have been elected to the UN's human rights watchdog, despite concerns about their rights records. Campaign groups have condemned the election of the countries to the 47-seat Human Rights Council. The UN General Assembly elected a total of 14 new members to the Geneva-based council on Tuesday. (BBC)

Netanyahu halts plans to build 24,000 more settler homes

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered on Tuesday a reassessment of plans to build nearly 24,000 settler homes, saying he feared an international outcry that would divert attention from Israel's lobbying against a nuclear deal with Iran. (Reuters)

Terror suspects could face mosque ban, MPs told

The home secretary could ban terror suspects who are subject to orders restricting their movement from going to mosques, the government's chief anti-terrorism official has said. (BBC)

Francis Bacon's 'Three Studies of Lucian Freud' most expensive artwork ever auctioned

The piece was purchased by art dealer William Acquavella on behalf of an unnamed client for $142.4m (£89.6m) at Christie’s in New York on Tuesday, following a bidding battle between seven prospective buyers. The previous record was set by Edvard Munch’s “The Scream,” which fetched almost $120m at Sotheby’s last year. (Independent)

Stephen Hawking: physics would be 'more interesting' if Higgs boson hadn't been found

Physics would have been "far more interesting" if scientists had been unable to find the Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider in Cern, according to Stephen Hawking. If it had not been found, physicists would have had to go back to the drawing board and rethink many of their fundamental ideas about the nature of particles and forces – an exciting prospect for some scientists. "Congratulations to them [Peter Higgs and François Englert] both. But the discovery of the new particle came at a personal cost. I had a bet with Gordon Kane of Michigan University that the Higgs particle wouldn't be found. The Nobel prize cost me $100," Hawking said at an event to mark the launch of a new exhibit about the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at the Science Museum in London. (Guardian)