Voices Germany’s ‘Bild am Sonntag’ newspaper claims that President Obama knew that Ms Merkel’s phone had been tapped as early as 2010

About a year ago, I began to recieve a wonderful series of calls from America and London

Dangerous to fly over Africa, pilots are told

Airline pilots warned yesterday of an impending air disaster because of a "critical deficiency" in safety standards in most of African air space.

Search for an assassin

Richard Turner was shot dead at Christmas 18 years ago. That was the price he paid for fighting apartheid. The South African police didn't find the killer; they probably didn't try. Now his ex-wife, Barbara Follett, and the other women in his life are travelling home from London to tell his story. Will they find truth, or at least some solace? By Emma Daly

Bowls: Scotland dominate

Scotland, defending the triples title with a completely changed line- up of Margaret Letham, Betty Forsyth and Sarah Gourlay, emerged as the only unbeaten team after the six rounds of matches in the Women's World Championships at Leamington Spa yesterday.

Botswana's army chief defends purchase of tanks and combat aircraft

Botswana's army chief defended the purchase of tanks and combat aircraft yesterday, saying the country had a right to decide its military needs for itself. Lieutenant- General Ian Khama made the remarks after criticism from neighbouring Namibia over Botswana's purchase of 13 SF-5 fighter-bombers from Canada and its attempts to buy 50 German-made Leopard tanks and other weaponry from the Netherlands. A Botswana military source who did not want to be identified said the deal with the Dutch was worth about $15m (pounds 10m). Canada has said the aircraft are worth $50m. "We are the ones to say what is and what is not necessary for Botswana," General Khama said. "We were made attractive offers that we could afford."

Where the mighty Zambezi used to flow

The Makgadikgadi pans of the Kalahari desert, once a huge lake, are now a vast expanse of salt crust and mud.

Win an adventure in Africa

To celebrate the exploration of Africa by record numbers of British travellers, The Independent has joined forces with STA Travel, world leaders in young independent travel, and overland specialist Kumuka Expeditions, to offer a dream trip to two lucky readers. You will fly from London to Harare and join a14-day overland adventure organised by Kumuka, taking in the highlights of Zimbabwe and Botswana and covering what is arguably the greatest wilderness in southern Africa. You will also enjoy plenty of thrills - you don't just sit in the truck all day - as you tackle everything from white-water rafting to bungee-jumping.

England trio's crucial games

Bowls

Where the wild things are

The British Gas Wildlife Photography of the Year competition is the world's most prestigious. This year the winner was Cherry Alexander, from Dorset, with her stunning Blue Iceberg, Antarctica (below). She faced fierce competition from some of the category winners, featured here. See them at London's Natural History Museum

Do parents ever really grow up? on holiday

MY MOTHER announced last week that she had decided to remarry. She told my sister, who told me, and I expressed some surprise, because a month ago things weren't going too well with my mother on the second marriage front. But my sister was definite - the wedding was imminent, apparently. So then I rang my mother in America, where she lives with her husband-to-be, my future stepfather.

Lucky escape for the diamond company

A SENIOR executive of De Beers, the diamond company, has recently been trying to persuade the vicar at his Surrey church to pray for peace in Angola. Every Sunday, the congregation currently prays for Botswana because some parishioners have connections with an aid project there.

A fantasist hidden in suburbia

Her life seems careful, conventional, commuter-belt drab. But Hilary Mantel, having triumphed over illness and rejection, has become a novelist of dizzying imagination interview

Obituary: Guy Clutton-Brock

Guy Clutton-Brock was the first white man to be declared a national hero by the government of Zimbabwe.

TRAVEL / Beauty and the beast: In pursuit of big game in Botswana, John Carlin was warned that one large animal might show an inclination to pursue him

'IF YOU see Pavarotti, give him a wide berth - and don't get between him and the water.' Marie, the hostess at Camp Moremi game lodge, was giving me my first lesson in bushcraft. I had just flown in from Johannesburg and she was escorting me to my tent. Pavarotti, she explained, was the resident hippopotamus.

STAYING IN / York on Ads: No 51: Range Rover - An upmarket journey puts top people in top gear

'This is a commercial,' it says, at the midpoint of Range Rover's new three-minute epics. It's a necessary caution, because they've worked so hard to make these accounts of the land authentic, concerned, and quality as to induce the worthy dullness of the nice-looking sponsored travelogue.

Ace travel films with nice little motor attached

(First Edition)
Life & Style
Sampling wine in Turin
food + drink...and abstaining may be worse than drinking too much, says scientist
Arts & Entertainment
Game of Thrones writer George R.R. Martin has been working on the novels since the mid-Nineties
books
Sport
Jose Mourinho, Chelsea players celebrate Demba Ba's goal and Gus Poyet
sportLive coverage of today's final game between Chelsea and Sunderland
News
Easter a dangerous time for dogs
these are the new ones. Old ones are below them... news
News
Brand said he
people
Sport
Roger Federer celebrates his victory over Novak Djokovic in the Monte Carlo Masters
sport
Arts & Entertainment
Kingdom Tower
architecture
Voices
Actor Zac Efron
voicesTopless men? It's as bad as Page 3, says Howard Jacobson
Arts & Entertainment
The monster rears its head as it roars into the sky
film
Voices
For the Love of God (2007) The diamond-encrusted skull that divided the art world failed to sell for
its $100m asking price. It was eventually bought by a consortium
which included the artist himself.
voicesYou can shove it, Mr Webb – I'll be having fun until the day I die, says Janet Street-Porter
Career Services

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How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe: Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe

Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC
Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'

British Muslims's Happy video attacked as 'sinful'

The four-minute clip by Honesty Policy has had more than 300,000 hits on YouTube
Church of England-raised Michael Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith

Michael Williams: Do as I do, not as I pray

Church of England-raised Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife

A History of the First World War in 100 moments

A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife
Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

Jenny Collier: 'Sexism on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

The comedian's appearance at a show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill
Cannes Film Festival: Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or

Cannes Film Festival

Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
The concept album makes surprise top ten return with neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson

The concept album makes surprise top ten return

Neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is unexpected success
Lichen is the surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus, thanks to our love of Scandinavian and Indian cuisines

Lichen is surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus

Emily Jupp discovers how it can give a unique, smoky flavour to our cooking
10 best baking books

10 best baking books

Planning a spot of baking this bank holiday weekend? From old favourites to new releases, here’s ten cookbooks for you
Jury still out on Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini

Jury still out on Pellegrini

Draw with Sunderland raises questions over Manchester City manager's ability to motivate and unify his players
Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

The all-rounder has been hailed as future star after Ashes debut but incident in Caribbean added to doubts about discipline. Jon Culley meets a man looking to control his emotions
Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

The most prize money ever at an All-Weather race day is up for grabs at Lingfield on Friday, and the record-breaking trainer tells Jon Freeman how times have changed
Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail. If you think it's awful, then just don't watch it'

Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail'

As the second series of his divisive sitcom 'Derek' hits screens, the comedian tells James Rampton why he'll never bow to the critics who habitually circle his work
Mad Men series 7, TV review: The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge

Mad Men returns for a final fling

The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge
Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground as there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit

Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground

Technology giant’s scientists say there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit