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 Mary Bell: Child killer or child victim?

Death of a dictator 

Outrage! In the Cathedral 

Sex, lies and impeachment

Northern Ireland: An historic year

The year the bubble burst

Kosovo: Another Balkan tragedy

Nature's turbulent year

Sport: Trials and triumph


Pick of the month
The subjects that got you talking this month
Gitta Sereny
The author whose book about child killer Mary Bell caused a huge row.

The signing of the Good Friday Agreement gave the people of Northern Ireland hope for peace after 30 years of the Troubles.

The UK saw an outcry over the publication of Gitta Sereny's book about child murderer Mary Bell and there was also heavy flooding which claimed several lives.

April was the month when interest in Viagra really started to lift off as impotent men clamoured for the new wonder drug.

Singer George Michael, however, could probably have done with a pill to reduce rather then enhance his libido as he was arrested for indecent behaviour in a Beverly Hills public toilet.

More than 20 people were killed during Serb attacks in Kosovo while the economic crisis continued with warnings about the Japanese economy and lower growth in the UK.

Major international stories included the conviction of Maurice Papon for Nazi war crimes, the death of more than 100 Muslims at the Hajj pilgrimage and the escape of paedophile Marc Dutroux from prison in Belgium.

Linda McCartney, wife of former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney, and Tammy Wynette were two well-known personalities to say goodbye in April, as was James Earl Ray, the man convicted of killing Martin Luther King.

Sport saw Mark O'Meara win his first golf major after 18 years trying and desperate football fans endlessly ringing telephone hotlines to try to get World Cup tickets which seemed to have been reserved by the organisers almost exclusively for French fans.

Can Israel find peace? "Not while religious bigotry and Jewish fundamentalism exists."
"It's the Arab nations that can't be trusted."
Has religion lost its meaning? "Religion is more meaningful than ever."
"Religioin has lost the plot."
Is reading dead? "Anyone who sits in front of a computer is still reading!"
"Reading is the only way to travel through time."
Is the Grand National too cruel? "The only cruelty is the dashed expectations of those who bet."
"How long would it last if the runners were human?"
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