News Edward Snowden speaking during his dinner with a group of four retired US ex-intelligence workers and activists at a luxurious room in an unidentified location.

Former government contractor could join President Obama, Henry Kissinger and Nelson Mandela in historic list

Helen Zille (right), leader of the Democratic Alliance, is hugged by Mamphela Ramphele at the Cape Town conference

South Africa elections: Opposition parties unite to challenge ruling ANC

South Africa’s main opposition party has merged with a smaller group to jointly challenge the ruling ANC in elections in April.

Nelson Mandela statue: Sculptors told to remove bronze rabbit hidden in the ear

Government are now in discussions over how to remove the rabbit without damaging the statue of the anti-apartheid icon

Anthony Hilton: Pompous and smug, Davos has lost the plot

My Week We can expect the papers next week to be filled with musings from Davos, where the business and political elite are about to have their annual shindig in the Alps, so it was particularly satisfying on Thursday to record a piece for National Public Radio in the United States on why the whole gathering had long since lost the plot.

Simon Hughes says some view the criminal justice system as hostile

Simon Hughes: 'Legal profession must do more to reflect modern Britain'

Justice minister wants more female and ethnic minority barristers within 2 years

5 more important ways that Nick Griffin is bankrupt

The leader of the BNP Nick Griffin was yesterday declared bankrupt. He doesn't own a house, and has run out of money. But there are some other, probably more important things that the far-right politician lacks...

Mandela delivering his first public speech since his release from jail in Cape Town in 1990 - the same year Mandela visited Dublin

Time to remember Nelson Mandela’s soft touch with the IRA

When asked if the IRA should be admitted to Northern Ireland talks without first ending its campaign of violence, Mandela fumbled his reply

What will 2013 be remembered for?

We asked our columnists this question and here's what they had to say

West, who once referred to himself as the “number one rock star on the planet”, made the promise during the last leg of his Yeezus Tour

No more rants: Kanye West promises to take a vow of silence in 2014

West, who once referred to himself as the “number one rock star on the planet”, made the promise during the last leg of his Yeezus Tour

The Saturday Quiz answers

Here are the answers to this week's quiz...

That awkward moment when… You accidently confuse a real-life, living person with the Hollywood chap 20 years his junior that played him in a movie once.

Billboard confuses Nelson Mandela for Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman

New Delhi cloth merchant Chandrashekhar, who paid for the board out of his own pocket, said he didn’t know how the problem occurred

Locks changed on Nelson Mandela’s grandson Mandla Mandela's house as family feud boils over

The latest developments are part of a long-running feud between the two, both of whom have been jostling for position at head of the family

Paul Walker, iPhone 5s and 'Royal Baby' are Google Zeitgeist most searched for 2013

The annual report on the most popular news items and topics shows what the nation wanted to know in 2013

Mourners lining the roadside react as the cortège of former president Nelson Mandela passes through Mthatha on its way to his birthplace, Qunu, where he was to be buried today

Comrade Nelson Mandela is taken home to Qunu for the final time

Politics simmer as body of former president returns to birthplace

In brief: IOC set for anti-doping push

The International Olympic Committee has set up a $20m (£12m) anti-doping fund to boost detection methods and will hold an extraordinary session next year to push through changes for sports at the Olympic Games, its president, Thomas Bach, said today.

Xhosa women inside a house in the nearby village of Mvezo, where Mandela was born

Nelson Mandela burial: Qunu awaits final return of its most famous son

Amid the squabbles and chaotic preparations, residents speak of their pride in Mandela

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
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The super-rich now live in their own Elysium - they breathe better air, and eat better food, when they're not making beans on toast for their kids

The super-rich now live in their own Elysium

They breathe better air, eat better food, take better medicine
A generation of dropouts failed by colleges

Dropout generation failed by colleges

£800m a year wasted on students who quit courses before they graduate
Entering civilian life 'can be like going into the jungle' for returning soldiers

Homeless Veterans appeal

Entering civilian life can be like going into the jungle
Sam Taylor-Johnson: Woman on top

Sam Taylor-Johnson: Woman on top

Fifty Shades of Grey director on bringing the hit to the screen
Shazam! Story of the $1bn 'what's that song?' app

Shazam: Story of the $1bn 'what's that song?' app

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch