News A displaced family camp under a tree providing partial shade from the midday sun

Mediators said it was now unclear if South Sudanese rebels would start face-to-face peace talks with the government on Saturday, dampening hopes of a swift end to weeks of ethnic fighting in the world's youngest state.

No longer manager and client but still father and son – Anthony Hamilton (right) and Lewis in the pit lane

Father of Lewis Hamilton hits out at Paul Di Resta over accusations of incompetence

Anthony Hamilton is the Scottish racer's former manager

The Week in Radio: From Our Own Correspondent is a jewel in the BBC's crown

I can't remember the first time I heard From Our Own Correspondent on the radio. What I do recall is that it was part of the background noise of my childhood alongside the Blue Peter theme tune, the sound of farmyard animals and the words: "You're not going out dressed like that."

Ending poverty is a huge ambition. It's too much to ask of foreign aid

The long-running debate on how much foreign aid can help is drawing to a close

Johannesburg told to pull its ‘world class African city’ ads

The advertising watchdog has ordered the city of Johannesburg to stop running part of its “world class African city” marketing campaign because it is “misleading”.

Pregnant ewes at a farm in the Wiltshire village of Edington

After Schmallenberg and Bluetongue, expert warns of new diseases threatening Britain's livestock and crops because of global warming

Bleak assessment of climate change means world was facing 'a lot more unanticipated events'

Mokhtar Belmokhtar

One Minute With: Frank Westerman, travel writer/ historian

Where are you now and what can you see? I'm in the Dutch "highlands". No windmills but beautiful "Ruysdael" clouds drifting over.

The head of the chiefs of staff, Admiral Edouard Guillaud, said that the death of Abou Zeid, military commander of al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (Aqim), was “probable”

Al-Qa’ida commander Abou Zeid may be dead, says France

A senior Islamist leader has “probably” died in fighting in the mountains of northern Mali, the French military said today.

Nicolas Sarkozy, for good reasons and bad, is partly responsible for what is happening in Mali

Why the French believed they had no choice but to intervene in Mali’s war

Sarkozy, for good reasons and bad, is partly responsible for what is happening  in Mali

Wanted: Mokhtar Belmokhtar masterminded last week’s raid but it is still unclear if he took part

'Mr Marlboro' lands a seismic blow

"The Uncatchable One", "Mr Marlboro", "One-Eyed Jack": Khaled Abu al-Abbas aka Mokhtar Belmokhtar isn't short of colourful name tags. Considering the fact that this battle-hardened jihadist cum smuggling don has been the southern Sahara's public enemy number one for the past decade or more, that's hardly surprising.

Fear and confusion: how workers ran for their lives as brutal onslaught began

Eyewitnesses describe hostages seeking refuge under beds and in roof spaces as Algerian forces took matters into their own hands

PM signals support for anti-terror action in North Africa

MPs told groups linked to al-Qa’ida represent a 'large threat' needing a 'robust response'

The sands of time have not eroded the spirit of adventure which drives a race that delivers as much pain as pleasure

The Dakar Rally: Get set for the maddest race on Earth

The sands of time have not eroded the spirit of adventure which drives a race that delivers as much pain as pleasure

MS Dhoni hit the winning runs to quell calls for his resignation

MSDhoni makes wayward England pay as Eoin Morgan starts with Twenty20 defeat

England 157-6 India 158-5 (India win by five wickets): India regain winning touch as the tourists’ bowlers are punished for their indiscipline

ANC President, Jacob Zuma, right, celebrates his re-election with new deputy leader, Cyril Ramaphosa

Billionaire waits in wings as ANC re-elects Jacob Zuma as its leader

Apartheid-era hero Cyril Ramaphosa returns to frontline politics as deputy leader

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Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
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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