Merkel’s tough euro plan sparks backlash
Germany

Merkel’s tough euro plan sparks backlash

Germany and France launched a radical drive Friday to unify the diverse, debt-ridden eurozone economy, but plans to stifle wage growth provoked an immediate backlash.

Foreign Ministry denies failure to help Germans leave Egypt
Germany

Foreign Ministry denies failure to help Germans leave Egypt

The German Foreign Ministry on Friday denied accusations that its embassy in Egypt had offered inadequate assistance to Germans trying to leave as the country descended into violence during the historic uprising of the last 11 days.

Consumers fearful of rising energy costs
Germany

Consumers fearful of rising energy costs

The cost of gas and electricity are the biggest financial worries for Germans, with nine of out 10 people concerned about the rising cost of energy, a poll published Friday has found.

Majority thinks quota needed for women execs
Germany

Majority thinks quota needed for women execs

Most Germans doubt that companies will boost the representation of women on their boards unless they are forced to do so by a mandatory quota, a poll published Friday found.

Profits mount at Sweden’s SEB bank
Sweden

Profits mount at Sweden’s SEB bank

Sweden's third-largest bank, SEB, reported bumper profits on Friday thanks to a sharp reduction in credit losses in the Baltic countries.

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Sweden

Norwegian swindler arrested in Spain

A Norwegian man wanted on suspicion of kidnapping, robbing and extorting several million kronor from wealthy Swedish men was caught and arrested in Spain on Thursday.

German women’s football team star and coach get Barbie dolls
Germany

German women’s football team star and coach get Barbie dolls

In anticipation of the Women’s World Cup in summer toymaker Mattel this week unveiled two new Barbie dolls modelled after Germany’s head coach and star player.

Swedish actress Lena Nyman dies
Sweden

Swedish actress Lena Nyman dies

The Swedish actress Lena Nyman, known from her roles in Ingmar Bergman's 1978 film "Autumn Sonata" and the "I am Curious" films, died on Friday after an extended illness.

Sweden raises 19 billion kronor from Nordea sale
Sweden

Sweden raises 19 billion kronor from Nordea sale

The Swedish government confirmed on Friday that it had raised 19 billion kronor ($2.94 billion) on the sale of 255 million of its shares in Nordic banking giant Nordea.

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Switzerland

Switzerland reels after huge sex abuse scandal

Care workers expressed shock and betrayal on Wednesday as Switzerland was left reeling by the country's biggest sex abuse scandal ever, involving abuse of at least 114 mainly handicapped youngsters.

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Switzerland

Watches boost Swiss trade figures

Vibrant Asian demand propped up Swiss trade last year despite the rising Swiss franc, as Switzerland's flagship watch industry restored its exports to pre-crisis levels, authorities said Thursday.
 

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Switzerland

Frenchmen’s stun guns and masks fall foul of Swiss

Swiss border guards on Thursday showed off an "exceptional seizure" of 42 disguised stun guns brought into the country by French men carrying teen horror movie "Scream" face masks.

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Switzerland

Nestlé opens major Nigerian plant

Swiss consumer products giant Nestle has opened an $80-million factory in Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation, in an expansion drive targeting the world's emerging markets.

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Switzerland

Swiss government told to launch Bush probe

A leading anti-torture group has called on Swiss authorities to open an investigation into former US President George W. Bush if he sets foot on Swiss soil next week.

Pots and pans sound hospital patient alarms
Sweden

Pots and pans sound hospital patient alarms

An overcrowded hospital in Gothenburg has resorted to giving patients in a children's ward saucepans and spoons to summon assistance in emergency situations, according to a union report.

Truckmaker Volvo drives back to profit in 2010
Sweden

Truckmaker Volvo drives back to profit in 2010

Volvo Group, the second-biggest maker of heavy vehicles, said Friday it returned to a booming profit in 2010, thanks to a strong recovery across the sector and despite a slightly disappointing fourth quarter.

Sweden Democrats: open the Stasi archive
Sweden

Sweden Democrats: open the Stasi archive

The Sweden Democrats has demanded that the Swedish Security Service's files on contacts between Swedish individuals and the Stasi be opened to the public in order "to clear the air" over the period in history.

Half-century of CDU rule in Stuttgart on knife edge
Germany

Half-century of CDU rule in Stuttgart on knife edge

In the race for the key state of Baden-Württemberg, the centre-left opposition is within striking distance of taking power in the March election after more than half a century of conservative rule, a poll showed Friday.

Catholic theologians call for end to celibacy for priests
Germany

Catholic theologians call for end to celibacy for priests

More than 140 Catholic theologians from Germany, Switzerland and Austria called Friday for an end to celibacy as part of sweeping reforms in the wake of a sex scandal that rocked the Church.

Forgive Greek debt, bank boss Dibelius urges
Germany

Forgive Greek debt, bank boss Dibelius urges

The German boss of the top US investment bank Goldman Sachs called on Friday for Greece’s debt to be partially forgiven in order to save the ailing Mediterranean nation from possible bankruptcy.

Swedish living rooms brace for Melodifestivalen invasion
Sweden

Swedish living rooms brace for Melodifestivalen invasion

What do a drag queen and teen-pop has-beens have to do with Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt? It can only mean the 2011 Melodifestivalen is upon us, contributor Julie Blomberg Gudmundsson explains.

Sweden opens national breast cancer study
Sweden

Sweden opens national breast cancer study

Over the next two to three years, 100,000 Swedish women will be recruited for a new national study of breast cancer led by a professor at Solna's Karolinska Institute.

Paris Hilton says she ‘wants to learn about Stuttgart 21’
Germany

Paris Hilton says she ‘wants to learn about Stuttgart 21’

Professional party girl and hotel chain heiress Paris Hilton is in southern Germany to educate herself on the controversial Stuttgart 21 rail project, her press relations agency said Friday.

Scrap wind power veto: environment minister
Sweden

Scrap wind power veto: environment minister

Swedish Environment Minister Andreas Carlgren has announced that he wants to remove the municipal vetoes against wind power farms that are currently in place.

Schröder for gradual quota for women execs
Germany

Schröder for gradual quota for women execs

Chancellor Angela Merkel may have ruled out a mandatory quota for women in executive positions at German firms this week, but on Friday Family Minister Kristina Schröder said she was still pushing a graduated scheme to achieve the same ends.

Ease immigrant family reunification: Greens
Sweden

Ease immigrant family reunification: Greens

Sweden's Green Party has announced that it wants to reduce or even remove conditions for immigration on the grounds of family reunification.

Dortmund hypes ‘most important match on earth’
Germany

Dortmund hypes ‘most important match on earth’

Borussia Dortmund hopes to tackle Ruhr valley rivals Schalke in front of 80,000 fans on Friday with no hype spared as the German league leaders' website described it as "the most important match on planet earth."