Caving in to pressure: why Mario Monti’s technocrats couldn’t repair Italy after Silvio Berlusconi’s government collapsed

Elsa Fornero, an academic whose job it was to modernise a rigid labour market, tells Michael Day what went wrong

Editorial: The fatal attraction of Silvio Berlusconi

For a country that has so much going for it, in the way of lifestyle, landscape and flair, Italy has an infuriating knack of doing just the wrong thing. And the fear must be, as Italians prepare to vote in elections that are as crucial for the European Union as they are for Italy, that the country is reverting to type.

After Berlusconi, Beppe should be just what Italy needs. And yet...

Honest, inexperienced politicians may not be the answer for a nation on the edge of economic disaster. Plus, the rise of Japan's concrete jungle

Here comes a chopper... After arms chiefs are accused of bribery in a $750m AgustaWestland deal

Andrew Buncombe reports on a history of corruption in India

Italy arrests Finmeccanica defence boss in helicopter bribes probe

The boss of Italy’s biggest defence company, Finmeccanica, and the top executive at its helicopter division, AgustaWestland, were arrested today in a corruption probe.

Silvio Berlusconi's political opponents have suggested that Mario Balotelli's move to AC Milan might have motivations beyond the football field

The Balotelli effect: Silvio Berlusconi surges ahead in polls weeks before Italian general election

A blitz of TV appearances, populist sound bites and even the signing of star striker Mario Balotelli for his AC Milan football club appear to have helped ex-Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi surge in the polls, just three weeks ahead of a general election.

Bellydancer's disappearing act delays Berlusconi corruption trial

Karima El Mahroug was due to testify on today but did not provide any valid justification for her absence

Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti intends to resign

Monti's vow to quit could bring Italian elections as early as February

Italy and Europe were tonight bracing themselves for a general election and the real possibility that the scandal-plagued billionaire Silvio Berlusconi could become prime minister for a fourth time.

Monti, stripped of Berlusconi's support, offers his resignation

Italian PM will stay in office only until austerity budget is passed
The openly gay, anti-mafia campaigner Rosario Crocetta took 31 per cent of the votes

Sicily's first gay governor opens a new schism between Italy's old enemies

Former bastion of homophobia has overtaken north on equality, says Milanese newspaper

Silvio Berlusconi passes a policeman outside Milan's justice court

Far from being a sideshow, Silvio Berlusconi's legal battles have dominated Italian politics for decades

The former President became a figure of ridicule and spawned a thousand other crooks

Pope's secret files has been found revealing Vatican scandals

Pope's butler found with thousands of secret papers

Documents tell tales of Vatican scandals, spies and secret societies, trial of Paolo Gabriele told

Giorgio Napolitano: The Italian President has demanded official clarification of why the raid went ahead

Italy attacks Cameron over high-risk rescue operation

President criticises 'inexplicable' failure to inform Italian authorities before SBS hostage raid

An activist set fire to tyres during a protest last week against the rail tunnel in northern Italy

Italy erupts over plans for high-speed rail link

Locals plan a general strike over decision to construct an Alpine tunnel through to France, that they say will cause huge environmental damage

A politician of unimpeachable integrity: Scalfaro in 2006

Oscar Luigi Scalfaro: Former president of Italy, renowned for his honesty

Oscar Luigi Scalfaro was a Catholic politician whose anachronistic virtues, in particular his complete honesty and his commitment to the constitution, came to Italy's rescue during the gravest political crisis of the post-war era, the corruption scandal which erupted in 1993.

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Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map