News Barack Obama told a crowd at a Costco store the country was moving on

Jobs and wages will be the main battleground of November’s mid-term elections

Dear Barry: Open letters have become the way high-flying individuals - and firms - get their message across

Open letters: To whom it may concern

It used to be just angry celebrities (and Moses) who wrote open letters. Now, even America's top businesses are taking the president to task, says Clare Dwyer Hogg

US President Barack Obama pauses while making a statement about the death of former South African President Nelson Mandela in the briefing room of the White House

Washington nears US budget deal to avoid new government shutdown

US politicians are closing in on a deal to ease the impact of spending cuts worth up to $200 billion (£122 billion) which are due to hit home next year, it emerged today.

Nelson Mandela dead: Giant laser image of Madiba projected onto Table Mountain, Cape Town

A giant laser image of Nelson Mandela has been projected onto Table Mountain in South Africa in an illuminated tribute to the late leader.

Demonstrators marching towards Government House in Bangkok; an estimated 100,000 protesters flooded the streets

Stalemate in Bangkok: protests go on despite Thai PM Yingluck Shinawatra’s surprise election offer

Analysts say call for early elections is unlikely to satisfy opponents who want to rid country of Shinawatra family's influence

US war veteran detained by North Korea Merrill Newman free to fly home after "apologising"

Merrill Newman, 85, was taken off a plane last month, accused of ordering the deaths of North Koreans during the 1950-3 war.

Desmond Tutu, Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town:
'He transcended race and class in his actions. He taught us that to respect those with whom we are politically or culturally at odds is not weakness, but a mark of self-respect.'

World leaders and celebrities to fly to South Africa for Nelson Mandela memorials

Few will want to miss being seen mourning one of the twentieth century’s greatest figures

Nelson Mandela's successors Jacob Zuma (left) and Thabo Mbeki (right) have largely failed to follow his example

Nelson Mandela legacy: What now for the continent he bestrode like a colossus?

He was both an inspiration and a reproach to his fellow African heads of state. But will the great man’s example continue to resonate, now that he is gone?

Dec 7, 2005: Nelson Mandela at 87 at the Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg, where he met with the winner and runner-up of the local

Nelson Mandela dead: World leaders mourn former South African president

A statement from Buckingham Palace said today: "The Queen was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Nelson Mandela last night. He worked tirelessly for the good of his country, and his legacy is the peaceful South Africa we see today.

Nelson Mandela dead: South Africa's first black president and anti-apartheid icon dies at 95

South African president Jacob Zuma confirmed the news in a statement saying the nation 'had lost its greatest son'

Charlotte Britz, mayor of Saarbrucken

Europe’s biggest brothel: it will cost €4.5m and will boast 90 prostitutes

Tony Paterson finds out if it really is easier to open a brothel than a chip shop in Saarbrücken

Ed Balls, left, and Chancellor George Osborne, right, share a lighter moment on ‘The Andrew Marr Show’.

Autumn Statement analysis: The Tories could fight an election tomorrow. Not so, Labour...

The Labour leadership needs to add detail to its alternative journey

Onyango Obama, at the time of his arrest in 2011

President Barack Obama's uncle allowed to stay in the US

Asked about his family, Onyango Obama told the court: 'I do have a nephew. Barack Obama. He's the president of the United States'

Rupert Murdoch
with Wendi Deng

Where are Alastair Campbell and John Scarlett when you need them to rebut this awful tittle-tattle about Tony and Wendi?

Details of the friendship continue to trickle into the public domain

The task force charged with fixing the website that is meant to give Americans access to new insurance policies under Barack Obama’s huge healthcare overhaul claimed that it had largely succeeded while acknowledging that some problems may persist

Obamacare: US healthcare site overhauled in rush to salvage policy – and reputation

Solving technical problems could be paramount to Democrats’ political fortunes

Michael Ford: Political consultant

Democratic party strategist who guided presidential candidates like Humphrey, McGovern and Mondale

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Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent
Markus Persson: If being that rich is so bad, why not just give it all away?

That's a bit rich

The billionaire inventor of computer game Minecraft says he is bored, lonely and isolated by his vast wealth. If it’s that bad, says Simon Kelner, why not just give it all away?
Euro 2016: Chris Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Wales last qualified for major tournament in 1958 but after several near misses the current crop can book place at Euro 2016 and end all the indifference
Rugby World Cup 2015: The tournament's forgotten XV

Forgotten XV of the rugby World Cup

Now the squads are out, Chris Hewett picks a side of stars who missed the cut
A groundbreaking study of 'Britain's Atlantis' long buried at the bottom of the North Sea could revolutionise how we see our prehistoric past

Britain's Atlantis

Scientific study beneath North Sea could revolutionise how we see the past
The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember,' says Starkey

The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember'

David Starkey's assessment
Oliver Sacks said his life has been 'an enormous privilege and adventure'

'An enormous privilege and adventure'

Oliver Sacks writing about his life
'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

The Rock's Chief Minister hits back at Spanish government's 'lies'
Britain is still addicted to 'dirty coal'

Britain still addicted to 'dirty' coal

Biggest energy suppliers are more dependent on fossil fuel than a decade ago
Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests