German Media Roundup: Hesse’s odd election
Germany

German Media Roundup: Hesse’s odd election

Germany kicked off what’s being billed as “super election year” on Sunday, but German newspapers in The Local’s media roundup aren’t quite sure what to make of the second state poll in Hesse within 12 months.

Merkel defends German stimulus package
Germany

Merkel defends German stimulus package

Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday defended Germany's decision to join other European powers in launching a massive economic stimulus but again warned against the danger of mounting debt.

Icy road conditions create chaos and kill 7
Germany

Icy road conditions create chaos and kill 7

Extremely icy streets caused hundreds traffic accidents, several severe injuries and even seven deaths across Germany during rush hour traffic, police reported on Monday.

Bodström reported over CIA terror deportations
Sweden

Bodström reported over CIA terror deportations

Former justice minister Thomas Bodström and former prime minister Göran Persson have been reported to the Riksdag's constitutional committee over the expulsion of two terror suspects Sweden to Egypt in 2001.

Reinfeldt in unexpected visit to Afghanistan
Sweden

Reinfeldt in unexpected visit to Afghanistan

Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt on Monday made a surprise stop in Afghanistan to meet Swedish troops in the northern part of the country, a government spokesman said.

Sanctions threaten Swedish lingonberry exports
Sweden

Sanctions threaten Swedish lingonberry exports

The Swedish government has expressed disappointment at a decision by the US to impose trade sanctions on a large number of EU products to force an agreement over hormone-treated meat.

Obama to thank Germans for support at Brandenburg Gate
Germany

Obama to thank Germans for support at Brandenburg Gate

President-elect Barack Obama is planning a speech before Berlin’s iconic Brandenburg gate in April to thank Germans for their support during his campaign, news magazine Focus reported this week.

Police chase down masked marauders on A3 motorway
Germany

Police chase down masked marauders on A3 motorway

A frantic call to police reporting a car with a pair of masked bandits caused a scare on the A3 motorway, but they turned out to be a couple who had caught a cold, Erlangen police reported on Monday.

Maja and Lukas top popular names list in Sweden
Sweden

Maja and Lukas top popular names list in Sweden

Maja and Lukas were the most popular names given to new born babies in Sweden in 2008. Iris and Harry are hot on their heels however.

40 students and teachers injured in school gas leak
Germany

40 students and teachers injured in school gas leak

Some 40 students and teachers suffered injury from a gas leak at a school in the northern German state of Schleswig-Holstein on Monday.

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Sweden

Swedish pension fund warns of payment cuts

Swedish pensions firm AMF Pension has confirmed there is a significant risk it will have to cut its dividend rate, according to a statement by AMF's CEO Ingrid Bonde to Dagens Nyheter.

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Sweden

Health authorities won’t hire med student with rape conviction

A medical student in Lund convicted for raping a minor will not be able to gain employment within the Swedish healthcare sector without prior approval, the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen) has ruled.

‘Endangered fish’ on sale in Swedish shops
Sweden

‘Endangered fish’ on sale in Swedish shops

Fish products from unsustainable stocks remain on sale in many Swedish retail outlets, according to a new report from the Society for Nature Conservation (SNCC).

The Local and Långholmen – a winning team
Sweden

The Local and Långholmen – a winning team

Finding a decent football team to support is one of the main challenges when settling in a new country. But getting behind a club whose tradition you don't share doesn't always work out for the best. That's why The Local has decided to lend its voice to Långholmen FC, arguably the most international football club in Sweden.

Porsche bids on remaining Scania shares
Sweden

Porsche bids on remaining Scania shares

German luxury automaker Porsche announced on Monday it was offering €2.8 billion ($3.7 billion) to buy up the rest of Swedish truckmaker Scania.

Germany increasingly worried about terrorism
Germany

Germany increasingly worried about terrorism

German officials have said they are increasingly worried about the possibility of terror attacks after a suicide bombing outside its Kabul embassy and a new al Qaida video threatening Germany with more bloodshed.

Poll: Swedish voters in the dark on EU elections
Sweden

Poll: Swedish voters in the dark on EU elections

Less than a third of the Swedish electorate is aware that there is an election to the EU parliament in 2009, according to a new Europe Barometer survey by TNS Gallup.

Dieter Bohlen testifies in robbery case
Germany

Dieter Bohlen testifies in robbery case

The tables turned for German pop icon Dieter Bohlen on Monday when he testified before a Lübeck court over a series of robberies that included his home, where thieves grabbed some €150,000 in goodies five years ago.

Merkel facing new election year against limping SPD
Germany

Merkel facing new election year against limping SPD

Germany's Social Democrats were nursing their wounds on Monday after a drubbing in a state election in Hesse over the weekend.

Glos: Germany must diversify energy after Russia gas dispute
Germany

Glos: Germany must diversify energy after Russia gas dispute

Germany's economy minister has called for diversifying the country's energy sources after the recent gas crisis in Europe, hinting Berlin should take another look at phasing out nuclear power.

German engineer kidnapped in Yemen
Germany

German engineer kidnapped in Yemen

Armed tribesmen have kidnapped a German engineer in southern Yemen, the man’s employer confirmed on Sunday evening from capital city Sanaa.

Sweden pressured in 2001 terror case: report
Sweden

Sweden pressured in 2001 terror case: report

Fresh details have surfaced about the deportation of two terror suspects from Sweden to Egypt in December 2001, including allegations of US pressure and the role of former foreign minister Anna Lindh, following the release a new book on Monday.

Swedish woman allowed to seek treatment for ‘Coke’ addiction
Sweden

Swedish woman allowed to seek treatment for ‘Coke’ addiction

A Swedish court has ruled that a woman be allowed to seek treatment for her addiction to Coca Cola.

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Sweden

Man beaten in vicious hate crime

A man with an immigrant background was insulted before being brutally beaten with a baseball bat in the town Arnö, outside of Nyköping in eastern Sweden.