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Italy’s deputy prime minister and League party leader Matteo Salvini greets supporters during a rally of European nationalist and far-right parties in Milan last Sunday. Photograph: Alessandro Garofalo/Reuters

As Matteo Salvini stepped out of his ministerial car and was whisked by security guards into a theatre in the southern Italian town of Foggia, the che(...)

Tunisian Houda Zghidi moved to Ireland four years ago. She  works for a tech company. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

When Houda Zghidi began chatting online with an Italian man based in Dublin she was not looking for a long-term relationship. She loved living in her (...)

Mariarita Arenella at Airmid Health Group. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Mariarita Arenella always wanted to work in a lab. When asked as a child what her dream job would be her answer was always “a chemist”. With a geologi(...)

Leaving cert diary: Coláiste Éinde Galway Leaving Certificate students, from left:  Muireann O’Reilly, Evan Murphy, Ciara Kilbane, Lauren Conway, Osas Aghabueze-Ayo and Tom Crumlish. Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

The last two years have been a long slog for the thousands of Leaving Cert students who picked up their results earlier this month. But for most of ou(...)

 Lauren Conway, a Leaving Cert student at Coláiste Éinde, Galway: “The question on ‘Hamlet’ asked us to examine it as a disturbing psychological thriller, and I think most students were quite happy with this question.” Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

It was the discussion of the Leaving Cert: which poets will appear on the paper? Like a lot of my classmates, I was really nervous about this. While (...)

The diarists:   Ciara Kilbane, Tom Crumlish, Lauren Conway, Muireann O’Reilly, Osas Aghabue-Ayo   and Evan Murphy. Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

There’s a line forming outside the principal’s office. They’re waiting patiently, but they’re not here to talk to Deirbhle Quinn, the school principa(...)

On the nose: Taoiseach Enda Kenny with ploughing champion Brian Mahon, Michelle Mahon and their baby daughter Chloe, from  Blueball, Co Offaly, at the National Ploughing Championships at Screggan, Co Offaly. Photograph: Eric Luke

Screggan was awash with relieved sheep and anxious cows yesterday. The cattle were very uneasy. When the Taoiseach made that alarming announcement(...)