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Sweden

Pirate Bay ‘biggest and baddest villain’: exec

Tempers flared during The Pirate Bay trial on Wednesday afternoon as a record company executive argued the popular file sharing site was to blame for falling music sales.

Duisburg candidate for mayor: boycott Israel
Germany

Duisburg candidate for mayor: boycott Israel

Hermann Dierkes, a leftist candidate for mayor in the Ruhr Valley city Duisburg, on Wednesday defended his call for a boycott of Israel for its treatment of the Palestinians despite widespread criticism he was stoking anti-Jewish sentiments in Germany.

Saab production grinds to a halt
Sweden

Saab production grinds to a halt

All production ceased at Saab's Trollhättan plant on Wednesday after it emerged that the embattled Swedish car maker had failed to pay customs duties.

Swedish parliament passes copyright bill
Sweden

Swedish parliament passes copyright bill

As expected, the Riksdag passed a controversial new measure on Wednesday designed to make it easier to investigate suspected cases of illegal file sharing.

Ex-RAF leftist turned neo-Nazi lawyer Mahler gets 6 years in jail
Germany

Ex-RAF leftist turned neo-Nazi lawyer Mahler gets 6 years in jail

A Munich court on Wednesday sentenced Horst Mahler, a prominent right-wing extremist and former member of the leftist terrorist group the RAF, to six years in prison for incitement of hate crimes.

East’n’bul: A slice of Turkish nightlife in Sweden
Sweden

East’n’bul: A slice of Turkish nightlife in Sweden

Dilay Dede meets up with Hakan Vreskala just before the start of his live band tour Klubb East'n'bul, which brings Istanbul style nightlife to Sweden.

German economy officially taking a dive
Germany

German economy officially taking a dive

The German economy, Europe's biggest, shrank by 2.1 percent in late 2008, its sharpest contraction since the country was reunited in 1990, official data confirmed on Wednesday.

Papers give royal engagement a lukewarm reception
Sweden

Papers give royal engagement a lukewarm reception

Sweden’s newspapers had mixed reactions to the news of Crown Princess Victoria’s engagement to Daniel Westling.

Police chief attacks Karneval booze frenzy
Germany

Police chief attacks Karneval booze frenzy

The Cologne chief of police is suggesting a total bottle ban during the city’s debaucherous Karneval festival after annual booze-fuelled frenzy became particularly rowdy this week, daily Express reported on Wednesday.

Schwan warns Merkel refugee row could damage Polish ties
Germany

Schwan warns Merkel refugee row could damage Polish ties

Gesine Schwan, Berlin's coordinator for German-Polish cooperation, has warned Chancellor Angela Merkel ties with Warsaw could be damaged by a conflict over a planned foundation for World War II refugees, Berliner Zeitung reported on Wednesday.

Chinese firms kick off German spending spree
Germany

Chinese firms kick off German spending spree

A delegation of over 200 Chinese companies on Wednesday kicked off a European shopping spree by negotiating contracts worth billions of euros with German firms in Berlin.

Sweden to shed 20,000 construction jobs
Sweden

Sweden to shed 20,000 construction jobs

Sweden is set to lose 20,000 jobs in the building sector in the coming year, according to a new forecast from the Swedish Construction Federation (Sveriges Byggindustrier - BI).

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Sweden

Examiner charged over driving licence bribes

A driving examiner from Gothenburg has been indicted on bribery charges. The woman is alleged to have accepted half a million kronor ($57,000) in exchange for approving driving licences for 70 test candidates.

Arson suspected in hotel inferno
Sweden

Arson suspected in hotel inferno

Police suspect that a fire which raged through a hotel in Eskilstuna in central Sweden early Wednesday morning was deliberately set.

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Sweden

Government wants to scrap mandatory student unions

A new government proposal calls for compulsory membership in student unions to be made voluntary for students enrolled in Swedish colleges and universities starting in July 2010.

Monster pig terrifies Hessian motorists
Germany

Monster pig terrifies Hessian motorists

A “monster pig” broke out of its pen in the middle of the night and blocked traffic near Alsfeld because drivers were too frightened to get out of their cars and move the sow, police in the state of Hesse said on Wednesday.

Bayern hopeful Toni will be fit for Champions League clash
Germany

Bayern hopeful Toni will be fit for Champions League clash

Bayern Munich are hoping to have Luca Toni back for their Champions League clash at Sporting Lisbon on Wednesday as the Italian striker recovers from a heel injury.

Overweight people die younger: Swedish study
Sweden

Overweight people die younger: Swedish study

Researchers in Sweden have found that people who are overweight from a young age run a much increased risk of dying prematurely.

Swedes brace for movie version of Stieg Larsson thriller
Sweden

Swedes brace for movie version of Stieg Larsson thriller

With the film based on the first book in Stieg Larsson’s crime novel trilogy due to hit Swedish cinema’s on Friday, the AFP’s Delphine Touitou takes a look at how the late authors work has been adapted for the big screen.

Opel plant workers to rally in hopes of saving their jobs
Germany

Opel plant workers to rally in hopes of saving their jobs

Unions are urging Opel plant workers in Germany, and other European staff of US auto giant General Motors (GM), to protest this week in a bid to save their jobs and call for state aid.

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Sweden

Saab unions: Opel merger would be ‘a catastrophe’

Union leaders in Sweden have rejected the notion of a merger between Saab Automobile and the German General Motors (GM) brand Opel.

Mother and three children die in fire
Germany

Mother and three children die in fire

A mother and her three children are dead after their Moers apartment caught fire early on Wednesday morning, police in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia said.

Wedding will ‘boost Sweden’s monarchy’
Sweden

Wedding will ‘boost Sweden’s monarchy’

As a new poll shows that Swedes believe Daniel Westling is the right choice for Crown Princess Victoria, one of the country’s most respected historians said that a royal wedding can only strengthen Sweden’s monarchy.

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Sweden

Woman baffled by 10 billion kronor banking mistake

A woman from Gothenburg couldn’t believe her eyes when she discovered a 10 billion kronor ($1.13 billion) deposit in her bank account.