VW idles 92,000 as BMW cuts production
Germany

VW idles 92,000 as BMW cuts production

Europe's leading carmaker Volkswagen said on Tuesday it would idle about two thirds of its 92,000 German workforce for one week next month as it cuts production amid an economic slump.

German hostage freed in Yemen
Germany

German hostage freed in Yemen

A German contractor taken hostage in Yemen has been released, a tribal source close to the kidnappers said on Tuesday.

Swedes ‘too quick to pick sides’ in Gaza conflict
Sweden

Swedes ‘too quick to pick sides’ in Gaza conflict

An Israeli Jew on a temporary stay in Sweden, Omri Grinberg is dismayed by the lack of nuance displayed by supporters of both sides in the Gaza war.

Merkel hopes for better US-German ties with Obama
Germany

Merkel hopes for better US-German ties with Obama

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday said she hoped for closer cooperation with the US government after Barack Obama’s takes his place in the White House.

Flu bug infecting northern Germany
Germany

Flu bug infecting northern Germany

A wave of influenza has hit nothern Germany with a vengence and will likely spread across the country in the coming weeks, according to flu experts.

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Sweden

Borg sees second financial crisis ahead

Finance Minister Anders Borg warned on Tuesday of the risk for a crisis in the real economy to come back and cause yet another financial crisis.

Retail giant Metro reportedly axing 15,000 jobs
Germany

Retail giant Metro reportedly axing 15,000 jobs

German retail giant Metro is planning to cut 15,000 jobs or five percent of its workforce in a major restructuring programme to help it weather the economic slowdown, company sources told AFP on Tuesday.

Bakery driver on trial for burying ‘lying’ girlfriend alive
Germany

Bakery driver on trial for burying ‘lying’ girlfriend alive

A 40-year-old bakery delivery man went on trial in Cologne on Tuesday for burying his girlfriend alive.

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Sweden

Growing online sex threat for Swedish girls

More than 60 percent of Swedish teenage girls have received unwanted sexual overtures over the internet, according to fresh figures presented on Tuesday.

Glos: EU blackmailed by Turkey over pipeline
Germany

Glos: EU blackmailed by Turkey over pipeline

Turkey is blackmailing the European Union over the proposed Nabucco gas pipeline, which would bypass Russia by bringing Caspian Sea gas to Europe, German Economy Minister Michael Glos said on Tuesday.

More Swedish women want to be cops
Sweden

More Swedish women want to be cops

For the first time ever, women outnumber the men among the new recruits at the Swedish National Police Academy as the January intake arrives in Umeå and Växjö to start their training.

Linguists pick ‘needy banks’ as panned German phrase of 2008
Germany

Linguists pick ‘needy banks’ as panned German phrase of 2008

A jury of language experts on Tuesday chose the phrase notleidende Banken, or “needy banks,” as 2008's most scorned linguistic no-no in German.

Enter Obama: A new map for American-German relations
Germany

Enter Obama: A new map for American-German relations

A new chapter in transatlantic ties begins on Tuesday with the inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th president of the United States of America. Dr. Jackson Janes, executive director of the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies at Johns Hopkins University, outlines the key issues where the new US administration can work with Berlin.

Impoverished parish deploys trailer to transport dead
Sweden

Impoverished parish deploys trailer to transport dead

The diocese in Borgsjö/Haverö in northern Sweden has given permission for the use of a cargo trailer in place of the more conventional hearse to transport the dead of the parish on their final journey, reports the Sundsvalls Tidning (ST) newspaper.

German men are more romantic than their lady friends
Germany

German men are more romantic than their lady friends

German men are more romantic and say "I love you" more often than their female counterparts, according to a poll released by Reader’s Digest on Tuesday.

Investor posts 36 billion kronor loss for 2008
Sweden

Investor posts 36 billion kronor loss for 2008

The Wallenberg industrial holding company Investor reported huge losses for 2008 on Monday, despite a reduction in fourth quarter losses.

Skier Kalla named Sweden’s Sports Personality of the Year
Sweden

Skier Kalla named Sweden’s Sports Personality of the Year

Cross-country skiing sensation Charlotte Kalla was awarded the Jerring prize for the best sporting performance of 2008 at Sweden's sports gala on Monday.

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Sweden

Sweden mulls tougher file sharing measures

Sweden wants to give police more power to go after those suspected of illegal file sharing even if the crimes are only fineable offences.

Ibrahimovic named Italian Player of the Year
Sweden

Ibrahimovic named Italian Player of the Year

Sweden and Inter Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic received the top accolade at the Italian Player of the Year awards on Monday evening.

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Sweden

Aussie volleyball team escapes blazing bus near Borås

A bus carrying a boy's volleyball team from Australia caught fire on Monday afternoon while traveling on highway 40 west of Borås in western Sweden.

Critics savage Cruise’s anti-Hitler performance in ‘Valkyrie’
Germany

Critics savage Cruise’s anti-Hitler performance in ‘Valkyrie’

German critics savaged Tom Cruise's portrayal of Adolf Hitler's would-be killer in "Valkyrie" ahead of the film's release on Tuesday evening, but relished a homegrown hero getting the Hollywood treatment.

Swedish grocers selling ‘Spanish’ fruit from Israel
Sweden

Swedish grocers selling ‘Spanish’ fruit from Israel

Stores from two separate grocery chains in Sweden have changed the country of origin displays for fruit imported from Israel.