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'Hiking the Tongariro Alpine Crossing in New Zealand was extraordinary'

US Congressmen tone down health debate

The House of Representatives reconvened yesterday for the first time since the attempted assassination of one of its members, and staged a toned-down debate on a bill to repeal President Barack Obama's healthcare reforms.

Cheney says he may undergo heart transplant

Former Vice President Dick Cheney says he believes he'll have to make a decision on whether to have a heart transplant given his medical history.

Congresswoman making recovery

The Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords's medical condition was upgraded from critical to serious, eight days after she was shot through the head by a gunman at close range.

Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords making progress

In yet another sign of significant recovery during a remarkable week, the gravely wounded US Representative Gabrielle Giffords was upgraded from critical to serious condition after a procedure to remove her from a ventilator was successful.

Shooting victim makes death threat

A victim of last week's Arizona shooting rampage was arrested on Saturday and ordered to undergo a mental evaluation after threatening a Tea Party leader during the taping of a television show.

Rupert Cornwell: A pitch-perfect response restores Obama's stature

The aftermath of Tucson showed the President at his best – while his rival appeared combative and petty

Revealed: gunman's weird countdown to Tucson rampage

Investigators piece together bizarre behaviour in hours leading up to attack on congresswoman

Mary Dejevsky: Fact: our politicians are not necessarily safer than theirs

That the blame has settled so soon on the malevolence of US politics fosters the conclusion that their politicians are uniquely threatened

Obama's emotional plea for unity on day of grief

In his speech in Tucson, the President reminded a nation of his appeal as an inspirational leader

Obama makes unity plea as Giffords opens eyes

Barack Obama appealed for unity at a memorial service for those attacked in the Arizona shooting rampage and implored a divided America to honour them by becoming a better country.

Missed opportunities to thwart gunman's plans

As Federal investigators in Tucson try to piece together a detailed picture of Jared Loughner, the suspect in last weekend's mass shopping centre shooting, one question keeps coming back: why were no alarm bells sounded with the authorities before last Saturday about his disturbing behaviour?

Palin: Blaming me for Tucson shootings is 'blood libel'

Right-wing firebrand goes on offensive as Obama leads national mourning for victims

Sarah Palin blames journalists for inciting hatred after shooting

Right-wing US politician Sarah Palin has posted a nearly eight-minute video on her Facebook page condemning those who blame fierce political campaigning for the Tucson massacre.

Politics as usual in a city struggling to come to terms with its grief

As Americans mourn a national tragedy, they have also been grappling with hard questions about their ideological divide

Arizona shooting suspect could face death penalty

The 22-year-old loner accused of trying to assassinate a U.S. congresswoman and killing six others, appeared in court and looked on impassively as a judge told him he could face the death penalty for the shooting rampage that shocked the nation.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks
The haunting of Shirley Jackson: Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?

The haunting of Shirley Jackson

Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?
Bill Granger recipes: Heading off on holiday? Try out our chef's seaside-inspired dishes...

Bill Granger's seaside-inspired recipes

These dishes are so easy to make, our chef is almost embarrassed to call them recipes
Ashes 2015: Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

A woefully out-of-form Michael Clarke embodies his team's fragile Ashes campaign, says Michael Calvin
Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen