Melodifestivalen draws 3.9 million viewers
Sweden

Melodifestivalen draws 3.9 million viewers

A bumper week for public broadcaster SVT saw ratings explode for the finals on consecutive evenings of song competition Melodifestivalen and ever-popular game show På Spåret.

Ministry calls lawyers’ demands for Kunduz bombing victims unrealistic
Germany

Ministry calls lawyers’ demands for Kunduz bombing victims unrealistic

The German Defence Ministry may break off negotiations with lawyers after they demanded €7 million for the families of victims of a September 2009 bombardment that killed scores of Afghan civilians near Kunduz.

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Sweden

King’s pal seeks bumper payout for country estate

Torgils Bonde, a member of Sweden's high society, has raised eyebrows by putting his 2,800 hectare property up for sale for close to a record sum of 200 million kronor ($28.3 million).

France attacks hefty German trade surplus
Germany

France attacks hefty German trade surplus

France on Monday accused Germany of trying to boost trade at the expense of Berlin's eurozone partners by squeezing salaries and pushing exports, as Europe seeks to emerge from the global economic crisis.

Government goes ahead with drug tests for kids
Sweden

Government goes ahead with drug tests for kids

The Swedish government has ignored the advice of Sweden's Council on Legislation (Lagrådet) and proposed the introduction of drug tests on children below the age of 15.

Catholic groups chastise pope’s silence on sex abuse scandal
Germany

Catholic groups chastise pope’s silence on sex abuse scandal

German Catholic groups on Monday criticised the pope's silence over a snowballing child sex abuse scandal rocking his native country's Church.

Westerwelle’s taboo travels
Germany

Westerwelle’s taboo travels

Homophobia didn’t disappear once Guido Westerwelle became Germany’s foreign minister. But questions about him promoting personal interests on official trips abroad have nothing to do with him being gay, argues Tissy Bruns from Der Tagesspiegel.

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Sweden

Riksbank off base with finance crunch rate hikes

The Swedish Riksbank has concluded that while everyone failed to see the impending finance crunch, it's own board was furthest behind.

Audi blasts past French speed trap at 300 kph
Germany

Audi blasts past French speed trap at 300 kph

French police have arrested a man caught driving a German-registered sports car so fast that their speed trap couldn't clock the estimated 300 kilometres (186 miles) per hour he was travelling.

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Sweden

Swedish road deaths plunge to record low

The wintry weather in Sweden has led to a record low number of road deaths, new figures from the Swedish Road Administration (Vägverket) show.

Sweden blitzed by ten-goal Canada
Sweden

Sweden blitzed by ten-goal Canada

Sweden's sledge hockey team received a thumping in Vancouver on Sunday as Canada posted a 10-1 win in the second group game at the Paralympic Games.

Week off to a slippery start as icy roads cause multiple accidents
Germany

Week off to a slippery start as icy roads cause multiple accidents

Wintery road conditions caused one death, traffic jams and several accidents across Germany, as commuters began their work week on Monday.

Deutsche Telekom introduces quota for women executives
Germany

Deutsche Telekom introduces quota for women executives

Europe's biggest telecommunications group, Deutsche Telekom, said Monday it would introduce a 30-percent quota for women in senior positions by the end of 2015.

German arms exports double in five years
Germany

German arms exports double in five years

Germany has doubled its arms exports over the last five years, making it the world’s third largest weapons dealer after the United States and Russia, according to a new study released on Monday.

Champs held as football season gets underway
Sweden

Champs held as football season gets underway

Swedish champions AIK got off to a slow start with a home draw against top-flight newcomers Mjällby. The 2009 runners-up IFK Gothenburg meanwhile opened the season with a flurry of goals, dispatching Kalmar 0-3.

Rösler mulling extra per capita health insurance premium
Germany

Rösler mulling extra per capita health insurance premium

German Health Minister Philipp Rösler plans to tack a monthly per capita premium of €29 on health insurance beginning in 2011 to make up for deficits at statutory insurers, a media report said on Monday.

Neo-Nazis resort to subtler tactics
Germany

Neo-Nazis resort to subtler tactics

Neo-Nazis in Germany are changing their recruitment strategy to include subtler tactics that target young people, a domestic intelligence expert said on Monday.

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Sweden

Reinfeldt denounces genocide vote

Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt called his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on Saturday in a bid to distance the Swedish government from a parliamentary vote which recognized the killing of Armenians by Ottoman Turks as genocide.

Westerwelle calls criticism of trips ‘slander’
Germany

Westerwelle calls criticism of trips ‘slander’

Germany Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle has rejected charges that he used foreign trips to promote the business interests of his partner, family and party donors, calling them "slander" in an interview.

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Sweden

Shots fired at Malmö police station

At least one shot was fired at the main police station in Malmö on Sunday evening. Police immediately cordoned off the building.

Man held over university massacre threat
Sweden

Man held over university massacre threat

A 33-year-old man has been arrested for threatening a student massacre at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm.