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Set in the wooded foothills the Bavarian Alps, the idyllic country town of Dietramszell is usually best known as a tourist attraction.

Malagon forged documents: he roundly rejected the idea that he was irreplaceable, as some said

Domingo Malagon: Master forger for the anti-Franco resistance

'Many of us owe our freedom to him,' a leader of the Communists said,' and some of us our lives'

This is Not A Film (U)

The title is a put-on, like the Magritte painting of a pipe.

Tabucchi: 'Like a comet I've traversed infinite nights,' he wrote

Antonio Tabucchi: Novelist who became a fierce critic of Berlusconi

Antonio Tabucchi was a leading Italian novelist, intellectual, academic and columnist, widely known to his countryman as a ferocious critic of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. He regularly accused Mr Berlusconi of using his political power to further his own interests. He was also an internationally-renowned expert and professor of the literature of Portugal, which he considered his second home and where he died of cancer aged 68.

Academy says Baron Cohen can go to the ball as long as he behaves

Sacha Baron Cohen is threatening to hijack the glitziest film show on earth before it has begun, as his latest comedy creation warned of "unimaginable consequences" if the organisers of the Oscars banned him from the ceremony.

Political giant: Fraga, seated, is applauded by his parliamentary colleagues in a tribute in 2008

Manuel Fraga: Politician who survived Spain's post-Franco transition to democracy

For more than 60 years, Manuel Fraga was a giant of Spanish politics who started out as a high-profile figure in the second period of Franco's regime and then made an opportunistic transformation in the post-Franco political arena.

Leading article: At 100, the ANC has lost its way

Nelson Mandela was the African National Congress's first "volunteer in chief". The 27 years he spent incarcerated in prisons stand as an emblem to our human capacity for self-sacrifice in the pursuit of fairness and equality. Mandela's gift to the South African people was to allow the nation to become the "beacon of hope" that David Cameron described in his congratulatory message to the ANC on its 100th anniversary yesterday.

Stefan Stern: Nobody tells the whole truth. But is a bit more of it too much to ask?

We live in a post-fact world where powerful people are relaxed about lying

Left to right: Former Egptian president Hosni Mubarak, Syrian president Bashar Assad, fallen Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and former Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali

Bonfire of the dictators

In the last part of our series, Robert Fisk ponders the fate of the despots who fought grimly against a revolutionary tide

Amol Rajan: Religious lessons of Christmas for a non-believer

FreeView from the editors at i

Tim Walker: Why is it so easy to laugh at dictators?

We really ought to welcome the demise of the last funny dictator
Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko

Foreign ministers step up rhetoric against Belarus

Belarus has been turned into a country “driven by fear” and is run by a dictator who has lost the legitimacy to rule his own people according to a damning joint statement from the foreign ministers of Britain, Sweden, Germany and Poland published exclusively in The Independent.

MPs demand reform of secretive lobbying system

The Government faced calls today  from both Tory and Labour MPs to reform Britain’s secretive lobbying system in the wake of revelations in The Independent.

The victims: 'We want democracy, we have had enough of this dictatorship'

More than 50 people were shot on the day that members of the Mukhabarat, Basher al-Assad's secret police, opened fire on a demonstration, killing 22 people. Ali, a 31-year-old farmer, was shot in the leg.

The No2AV campaign and a nasty dictatorship

It has become something a catchphrase for the Conservatives and the campaign against electoral reform to say that there are only three countries in the world who use AV and that Figi is one of them

The arrogance of an ailing dictator

We all presumed that he would be leaving. In fact, he refused to step down, adding yet more fuel to the fire of the Egyptian revolution.
Arts and Entertainment
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all