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Sweden

Moonshine makers jailed in southern Sweden

Eleven people have been convicted in southern Sweden for their involvement in the illicit distillation and sale of thousand of litres of bootleg booze.

Travel havoc continues as flight ban is extended
Germany

Travel havoc continues as flight ban is extended

German authorities have extended the closure of the country's airspace to 2 am Wednesday due to the giant plume of volcanic ash, though some airlines continued to operate flights with special permission.

Four soldiers injured in Afghanistan crash
Germany

Four soldiers injured in Afghanistan crash

Four German soldiers were wounded – some seriously – when their armoured vehicle crashed in Afghanistan on Tuesday, continuing a heavy run of casualties for the Bundeswehr.

Former Siemens execs fined for corruption
Germany

Former Siemens execs fined for corruption

A court handed two former Siemens executives suspended sentences and hefty fines Tuesday for their part in a corruption scandal that engulfed the German industrial giant in 2006.

Test flights show no damage to planes
Germany

Test flights show no damage to planes

Two comprehensive test flights by aircraft-manufacturer Airbus have shown no damage to aircraft or pilot's visibility, a company spokesman said Tuesday, suggesting the danger in volcanic ash-affected European airspace is lower than thought.

Opposition calls for Stockholm bypass vote
Sweden

Opposition calls for Stockholm bypass vote

The left-green opposition wants to hold a referendum on the Bypass Stockholm (Förbifart Stockholm) traffic link that will cost the state around 27 billion kronor ($3.75 billion).

Pensioner jailed for attempted Jehovah’s Witness massacre
Germany

Pensioner jailed for attempted Jehovah’s Witness massacre

An 83-year-old man who stormed a Jehovah’s Witnesses congregation with a machine gun in the city of Bielefeld was sentenced to 11 years prison on Tuesday for 39 counts of attempted murder.

Sweden tenth most attractive nation — again
Sweden

Sweden tenth most attractive nation — again

Sweden retains its position as the tenth most attractive country in the world, writes Liselott Bergman of the Swedish Institute. That is the result of this year’s Anholt-GfK Nation Brands Index (NBI), which measures the global image of 50 countries in terms of attractiveness and perceived qualities. One of Sweden’s challenges is to promote itself as a tourist destination – without having an Eiffel Tower or any other world-famous postcard motif to offer.

Volcanic ash fallout halts work at BMW factories
Germany

Volcanic ash fallout halts work at BMW factories

German luxury automaker BMW is partially halting production at several sites because of spare parts not arriving due to the turmoil in European air traffic, a spokesman said on Tuesday.

Serial killer applies for second retrial
Sweden

Serial killer applies for second retrial

Convicted serial killer Thomas Quick, who recently retracted confessions for eight murders, has formally petitioned the Svea Court of Appeal for a retrial in the case of the murder of nine-year-old Norwegian girl Therese Johannessen.

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Sweden

Tempers flare at hearing over car park killing

A courtroom in Lund played host to chaotic scenes on Tuesday morning as the district court ruled to keep a 23-year-old man in custody in connection with the car park assault that led to the death of a 78-year-old woman.

Germany named Europe’s top computer virus culprit
Germany

Germany named Europe’s top computer virus culprit

Germany hung onto its dubious title as Europe’s leader in spreading computer viruses in 2009, though its share of malicious activity in the region dropped slightly, a survey has found.

Mixa asks for forgiveness as Church begins abuse inquiry
Germany

Mixa asks for forgiveness as Church begins abuse inquiry

Controversial Augsburg bishop Walter Mixa has asked for forgiveness as church officials look into accusations that he physically abused children at a church orphanage and spent the institution's money on art, wine and jewellery.

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Sweden

TeliaSonera returns to profit as sales drop

TeliaSonera declared a return to profits on Tuesday while the Nordic telecoms giant reported a drop in sales for the first quarter 2010, coming in under analyst expectations.

Stubborn ‘strongmen’ brave ash cloud for gruelling foot race
Germany

Stubborn ‘strongmen’ brave ash cloud for gruelling foot race

Nearly 9,000 tenacious runners and triathletes overcame Europe’s transport chaos at the weekend to compete in the gruelling, 18-kilometre Fisherman’s Friend Strongman Run near the western German town of Weeze.

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Sweden

Spyker withdraws funds from Saab offshoot

Dutch firm Spyker has declared its intention to cover its losses by taking funds from Saab GB, arguing that the firm is not a Saab subsidiary but an independent company bought from US General Motors.

Senior conservative calls for end to Kunduz inquiry
Germany

Senior conservative calls for end to Kunduz inquiry

In the wake of prosecutors' decision to drop a criminal investigation into German Colonel Georg Klein over the Kunduz air strike, a leading conservative politician has demanded an end to the parliamentary inquiry into the affair.

Riksbank votes no to base rate hike
Sweden

Riksbank votes no to base rate hike

The Swedish Riksbank has decided to leave base (repo) interest rates unchanged at 0.25 percent, it was announced on Tuesday.

Crime drops for 2009
Germany

Crime drops for 2009

The number of criminal offences in Germany went down by 1.2 percent in 2009, a media report said on Tuesday.

German airlines resume limited flight schedules
Germany

German airlines resume limited flight schedules

Many German airlines resumed service on Tuesday morning despite another extension on the flight ban until at least 8 pm due to volcanic ash still hovering over Europe.

Stockholm Skavsta set to reopen
Sweden

Stockholm Skavsta set to reopen

Skavsta airport south of Stockholm is set to reopen on Tuesday, according to an update from the Civil Aviation Authority (Luftfartsverket - LFV), while airports south of a line between Norrköping and Strömstad remain closed.

Bayern preps for semi-final clash with worn-out Lyon
Germany

Bayern preps for semi-final clash with worn-out Lyon

Fresh from squeezing past Manchester United in the quarter-final, Bayern Munich are cautiously confident ahead of Wednesday's semi-final, first leg, Champions League clash against Lyon.

Enterprise minister says no to airline bailout
Sweden

Enterprise minister says no to airline bailout

Embattled airlines can not count on financial support from the Swedish state to compensate for the flight chaos of the past week, enterprise minister Maud Olofsson has said.

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Sweden

Swedish think-tank launches ethical aid tool

A Swedish think-tank has launched a new web portal enabling aid-workers and peacekeepers to check that the firms they contract do not also engage in illegal activities.