Latest National news

Christmas messages 2014 call for kindness and healing after difficult year

The Queen thanked those battling the Ebola virus, often at great personal risk.

Rose Powell 6:12 PM   Leaders have used their Christmas addresses to call for peace and kindness after a tough year.

Boxing Day sales: post-Christmas shopping frenzy begins

Shoppers across Australia are predicted to splash more than $2 billion on Boxing Day alone.

Hannah Francis 4:48 PM   Retailers are doing their best to entice customers in-store, though some will prefer online offerings.

Terror suspect outspoken since teenager

Islamic State

Neil Mercer 3:01 PM   legalled ok

Man fires shots in Southport residence, Queensland police hope for 'peaceful' resolution

Queensland police have asked residents near the Southport unit to remain indoors and fear an armed man may have a hostage.

Lucy Cormack and Natalie Bochenski 11:28 AM   Gold Coast police are negotiating with a man holed up inside a Southport unit block, after two shots were fired in the suburb overnight.

Clique photo of the day

Taken at Ruan Station.

8:17 PM   Congratulations to Paula Heenan.

Dear Santa: Frozen and iPads top wish lists

Please can I have  ... Thousands of letters have been sent to Santa this Christmas.

Pallavi Singhal   Dear Santa, I would like a beach house at Batemans Bay, a credit card, a puppy and everything in the world since I have been a really good girl. From Roxanne

Photo of the Day - walking with Forrest Gump

Nils Lantzke takes a walk with his pet alpaca Forrest Gump.

Congratulations to Stephen Smith, today's winner of our Summer Photo Contest for "Taking a walk with Forrest Gump". Our Clique Photographers Association contest runs until January 9, This week's theme is "Pets".

Clique competition photo of the day

Eye of the kelpie.

Congratulations to Jonathan Wright.

Clique photo of the day

Jet watches the world go round.

Congratulations to Cushla Monk.

Surviving Tracy: Cyclone's memories still haunt, 40 years on

Houses and trees destroyed by the force of Cyclone Tracy.

Owen Elliott   When Cyclone Tracy tore across Darwin it swept away Owen Elliott's family home. In a six-part video special he spoke to survivors of the disaster, and Tracy's legacy today.

Public service colleagues regret Kris Kringle calamity

Ngoc Luan Ho Trieu with a Kris Kringle gift that was given to him by one of his colleagues as a mean-spirited prank.

Primrose Riordan   While the perpetrator is yet to surface, colleagues of former Canberra public servant and Kris Kringle disaster victim have reached out to say they regret the affair.

Phones out at Fairfax Media's Sydney office on Christmas Eve

Fairfax Media logo

A fault outside the control of Fairfax Media on the morning of December 24 disabled our landline phones. We have been unable to take incoming calls or make outgoing calls. We apologise for any inconvenience to our readers, suppliers and advertisers.

Peter Greste could be home for New Year, says Bishop

Peter Greste.

Latika Bourke   Australia wants him home by Christmas. Egypt could let him go in time for New Year.

Abbott threatens APS annual holiday bonus at Christmas: union


Ross Peake   Public servants' annual days off at risk from hardline approach to pay negotiations, says the union.

Doctors revolt over land sale plan

Royal North Shore Hospital.

Amy Corderoy   Doctors at Royal North Shore Hospital have passed a motion of no confidence in the hospital board over the planned sale of parcel of land which they say will jeopordise treatment for years to come. 

Tsunami: We could see people being swept away

Sian Hughes in Sri Lanka in 2005, a year after surviving the Boxing Day tsunami.

Clare Kermond   "We stood on the balcony in absolute horror. You can't believe it's happening to you.''

Court: Homeopathic 'vaccines' found misleading

Judgment: A federal court has found a company selling homeopathic "vaccines" was engaging in misleading and deceptive conduct.

Amy Corderoy   Homeopaths who claim to be able to prevent whooping cough, have been put on notice after the federal court found a company selling homeopathic "vaccines" was engaging in misleading and deceptive conduct.

Abbott's new cabinet sworn in and given some homework


Gareth Hutchens   The Abbott government’s new-look cabinet was sworn in on Tuesday, bringing to a close a tumultuous first calendar year for the Coalition.

Australia faces Palestine vote

United nations.

Daniel Flitton   Australia's final days on the United Nations Security Council will be spent grappling with a Palestinian bid to impose an international peace plan to end the decades-long conflict with Israel.

After the tsunami, finding peace

Kimina Lyall, who survived and wrote about the Boxing Day tsunami.

Clare Kermond   It was the sound that started it all. On a postcard-perfect, blue sky day, sitting not far from the beach in an open-air yoga hut on Thailand's Koh Phra Thong Island, the group heard a crash unlike anything they'd experienced before.

Manslaughter conviction quashed again

Conviction quashed: Philip Leung.

Nick Ralston   A Sydney jeweller found guilty of killing his partner after three trials spanning four years has again had his verdict quashed.

School project that could transform Sydney's buses

Ted Hodge.

Amy McNeilage   Imagine if Sydney's bus stops changed colour depending on how far away the approaching bus was.

Social generation extends reach with Christmas selfie stick

Selfie stick

Marlene Millott   Selfie stick sales are soaring this Christmas as shoppers grab gifts for those who love to get the perfect snap of themselves.

Summer Quiz: What's the next line?

summer quiz web thumbnail

Harriet Veitch   Summer Herald Quiz: What's the next line?

What is ibogaine?

Brodie Smith

Lindsay Murdoch   New York City addicts stumbled across ibogaine in the 1960s.

Fight to save small towns divides regional experts

Butcher Leo Miceli makes a living in Nyah West but will never be a millionaire.

Ian Kenins   There are places like Nyah West all over Australia, once bustling but now just one-horse towns. Should they be saved or allowed to die a slow death. Ian Kenin reports.

Malthouse extends contract with La Trobe

Mick Malthouse Malthouse has suggested the AFL’s player movement system is against the law.

Daniel Cherny   He comes out of contract in his main job at the end of the 2015 season, but Carlton coach Mick Malthouse will continue to serve in his role as a vice chancellor’s fellow at La Trobe university.

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Bikie on Secret Garden gun crime faces fresh charge

Tammy Mills   A bikie jailed for pulling a gun at a popular St Kilda night spot will face a charge of stealing a $30,000 car when he is released from prison next month.

'Wake-up call' for fish poisoning

Researcher Shauna Murray, from the University of Technology, Sydney, has detected marine microalgae gambierdiscus as far south as Merimbula for the first time.

Peter Hannam   The after effects of a meal of Spanish mackerel meant months of pain and persistent nerve damage in this extraordinary case of food poisoning.

Aid fellowships focus on sport and culture

ACT Meteors batter Kris Britt hooks the ball past Queensland Fire wicket keeper Bethany Mooney.

Peter Hannam   Fisheries and climate change, gender equality and even trade are not priority foreign affairs and development issues for the Abbott government if its latest round of Australia Awards Fellowships is any guide.