What’s on in Sweden: November 20 – 26
Sweden

What’s on in Sweden: November 20 – 26

What's on in Sweden: International film festival & Simple Minds (UK) in Stockholm; Christmas market & Takida in Gothenburg; The Sonics (US) in Malmö/Lund.

Merkel calls for climate deal in early 2010
Germany

Merkel calls for climate deal in early 2010

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Wednesday that crunch UN climate talks in Copenhagen next month must lay the groundwork for a binding international pact to be signed in the first half of 2010.

Utilities hiking power prices
Germany

Utilities hiking power prices

Two German utilities – Vattenfall and EWE – announced on Wednesday they would dramatically raise electricity prices for their customers starting next year, blaming the higher cost of renewable energy.

Germany’s ageing population heading for massive decline
Germany

Germany’s ageing population heading for massive decline

The Federal Statistic's Office on Wednesday forecast Germany's rapidly ageing population was likely to decline by 20 percent to around 65 million by 2060.

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Sweden

Payback unlikely for Swedes swindled by bogus brokers

More than one hundred Swedes who were defrauded of tens of millions of kronor by a group of phony stockbrokers will likely never see their money again.

EU expresses Russia human rights concerns
Sweden

EU expresses Russia human rights concerns

Swedish prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt expressed concern on Wednesday over human rights deficiencies in Russia. Reinfeldt, whose country holds the rotating EU presidency, was speaking at the end of an EU-Russia summit.

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Sweden

Sweden hands over Maori remains

Sweden on Wednesday returned the skeletal remains of Maori people, which were removed from New Zealand in the mid to late nineteenth century.

German spy on trial for passing secrets to gay lover
Germany

German spy on trial for passing secrets to gay lover

A trial opened in Germany on Wednesday with all the elements of a 21st-century spy thriller: the Balkan criminal underworld, betrayal of state secrets and careless pillow-talk to a gay lover.

Swedish culture – a forgotten promotional tool
Sweden

Swedish culture – a forgotten promotional tool

Sweden’s cultural heritage is virtually unknown outside the country’s borders. Swedes should be better at using culture to promote their own country, writes Olle Wästberg, Director-General of the Swedish Institute.

‘Who threw it?’ – Swedish YouTube frisbee mystery solved
Sweden

‘Who threw it?’ – Swedish YouTube frisbee mystery solved

A Swedish newspaper has finally resolved the gripping YouTube mystery of an errant frisbee that struck a young man's face, causing him to spill a drink down the front of his shirt and go ballistic.

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Sweden

Shock therapy on the rise in Sweden: report

Swedish hospitals are increasingly turning to electroshock therapy to treat depression, but have failed to adequately warn patients about the risk for memory loss associated with the treatment, a Sveriges Television (SVT) report reveals.

Student protests prod officials toward education reforms
Germany

Student protests prod officials toward education reforms

The massive student protests across Germany this week appear to have prodded officials to undertake educational reforms, including changes to bachelor's programmes and financial aid.

Fraud scam sparks growing recall of German credit cards
Germany

Fraud scam sparks growing recall of German credit cards

A massive fraud ring in Spain has sparked a growing recall of German credit cards, with customers of nearly all banks in the country affected. Some 100,000 cards been affected so far.

Five percent of Swedes on sickness benefits
Sweden

Five percent of Swedes on sickness benefits

Nearly one in ten Swedes in their forties is currently receiving some type of benefit due to illness or disability, according to a new report.

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Sweden

Young woman with swine flu dies in Sweden

A 20-year-old woman from Norrköping in eastern Sweden has died after contracting the swine flu virus.

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Germany

Museum Island

A "temple city of the arts" lies in the centre of Berlin on an island in the River Spree. The Old Museum designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel and built in 1830 was the first building on Berlin Museum Island and the first public museum in Prussia.

Storm warning issued for North Sea coast
Germany

Storm warning issued for North Sea coast

The German Weather Service warned on Wednesday a low pressure system over the North Sea could bring hurricane-force winds of 115 kilometres per hour to Germany’s northwestern coast.

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Sweden

Swedish man charged for blackmailing sex buyer

A businessman from southern Sweden who attempted to pay for sex from two 18-year-old women instead found himself caught up in a blackmail scheme.

Germany extends military mission in Afghanistan
Germany

Germany extends military mission in Afghanistan

Germany's cabinet decided on Wednesday to extend the mandate for its unpopular military mission in Afghanistan by one year, Chancellor Angela Merkel said.

Lack of doctors for troops in Afghanistan
Sweden

Lack of doctors for troops in Afghanistan

Despite increased risks facing Swedish troops in Afghanistan, vital medical personnel are still in short supply in the field.

Court upholds conviction for Swedish hockey player’s on-ice fight
Sweden

Court upholds conviction for Swedish hockey player’s on-ice fight

A Swedish ice hockey player who was sentenced to two months in prison after fighting with an opposing player has had his sentence reduced upon appeal.

Hesse to send juvenile repeat offender to Eastern Europe
Germany

Hesse to send juvenile repeat offender to Eastern Europe

A 13-year-old serial thief responsible for more than 140 crimes is being shipped off to Eastern Europe for a year in a dramatic effort to get his life back on track, youth officials in the German state of Hesse said this week.

Chelsea teammates Ballack and Drogba to miss friendly
Germany

Chelsea teammates Ballack and Drogba to miss friendly

Both Germany captain Michael Ballack and his Chelsea teammate Didier Drogba have been ruled out for Wednesday's friendly match, as the mourning Germans prepare to take on the Ivory Coast.