Train drivers to strike Thursday commute
Germany

Train drivers to strike Thursday commute

Germany faced an ugly commute on Thursday morning, with the nation's train drivers walking off the job in a labour dispute.

‘Stockholm bomber was alone’: Swedish police
Sweden

‘Stockholm bomber was alone’: Swedish police

Swedish police have confirmed their view that the suicide bomber who blew himself up in central Stockholm in December was alone, while Scottish police continued to search for further UK-based suspects.

Lufthansa soared back to profit in 2010
Germany

Lufthansa soared back to profit in 2010

Leading German airline, Lufthansa, reported on Wednesday a net profit of €1.1 billion ($1.5 billion) in 2010, as it bounced back from a net loss of €34 million in 2009.

The rime of the ancient minister
Germany

The rime of the ancient minister

Can Thomas de Maizière, Germany’s new defence minister, break the curse hanging over his job? Roger Boyes, correspondent for British daily The Times, takes aim at a ministerial albatross.

Swedes suffer drop in disposable income
Sweden

Swedes suffer drop in disposable income

The majority of Swedes will experience a drop in their disposable incomes this year in comparison to 2009, with higher mortgage costs to blame, according to a new report published by Swedish bank Swedbank.

FDP’s Lindner compares Bavaria’s CSU with Islam
Germany

FDP’s Lindner compares Bavaria’s CSU with Islam

Bavaria’s conservative Christian Social Democrats are no strangers to anti-Islam sentiment, but a recent remark by Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich has inspired political rival to suggest that his party needed to integrate as well.

Woman makes dramatic flight from Tunisia
Germany

Woman makes dramatic flight from Tunisia

Coast guard officials in Italy were surprised on Monday to find a blonde-haired woman arriving on a boat with refugees from Tunisia. The German had risked a life-threatening trip with her daughter to escape her violent ex-husband.

Swedish arms exports increase in 2010
Sweden

Swedish arms exports increase in 2010

Swedish exports of defence equipment increased in 2010 to 13.7 billion kronor ($2.15 billion), according to a new report released on Wednesday.

Swiss upper house rejects burqa ban
Switzerland

Swiss upper house rejects burqa ban

Items of clothing that cover the face, including burqas and niqabs, should not be banned in Switzerland, the country's upper house of parliament has decided.

German media roundup: Berlin’s botched biofuel summit
Germany

German media roundup: Berlin’s botched biofuel summit

Tuesday’s “petrol summit” over the botched introduction of E10 biofuel has gotten a shellacking from all sides. Newspapers in The Local’s media roundup on Wednesday dose out a healthy portion of criticism for government and industry.

Sack of urine led to Swedish thief’s capture
Sweden

Sack of urine led to Swedish thief’s capture

A forgotten bag full of urine led to the conviction of a Swedish bank robber who had locked himself in the vault of Copenhagen bank.

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Sweden

Speed up immigrant Swedish courses: report

Newly arrived immigrants should be required to sign up for a Swedish for Immigrants (Svenskundervisning för invandrare - SFI) language course within a year of their arrival in the country, according to a government inquiry published on Wednesday.

Magath leaving Schalke
Germany

Magath leaving Schalke

FC Schalke 04 coach Felix Magath will reportedly leave the club at the end of the season at the latest. The news comes just hours before the troubled football club takes on Valencia in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Swedish ski resorts: skiing for everyone
Sweden

Swedish ski resorts: skiing for everyone

In Sweden there are some 200 ski resorts, ranging from family resorts, with children’s facilities and activities, to larger resorts with buzzing nightlife, excellent restaurants and lively bar scenes.

Warmer weather gives Swedes hope of spring
Sweden

Warmer weather gives Swedes hope of spring

While temperatures have been "spring-like" in many parts of Sweden in recent days, the formal declaration of the arrival of the new season is delayed by at least a week, the country's meteorological agency (SMHI) observed on Wednesday.

Ageing immigrants spark new nursing care niche
Germany

Ageing immigrants spark new nursing care niche

Many foreigners who came to Germany in the 1950s as “guest workers” have retired and now require special care. The situation has sparked a new niche market for retirement homes programmes that cater to the particular needs of ageing immigrants.

Understanding the Social Democrats’ leadership crisis
Sweden

Understanding the Social Democrats’ leadership crisis

The Swedish Social Democrats' selection of a replacement for outgoing party leader Mona Sahlin has turned into the most acute crisis in the party's history, political scientist Nicholas Aylott explains.

New York tops Swedish holiday wish list
Sweden

New York tops Swedish holiday wish list

New York City and other US destinations have become increasingly popular when Swedes plan their weekend getaways, new statistics published on Wednesday show.

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Switzerland

Swiss return ancient mummies to Chile

Four pre-Columbian mummies, including two Chinchorro mummies cast as the oldest in the world, have been returned to Chile from a private collection in Switzerland.

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Sweden

Swedish ‘cannibal’ convicted of murder

A 32-year-old Swedish man who decapitated his girlfriend and then ate parts of her body was convicted on Tuesday of murder.

Daimler and Rolls-Royce unveil new joint venture
Germany

Daimler and Rolls-Royce unveil new joint venture

German automaker Daimler and Britain's Rolls-Royce announced Wednesday plans to take over Tognum, a German manufacturer of motors and turbines they want to make into a world leader.

Treatment, not jail, for drunken Swedes: report
Sweden

Treatment, not jail, for drunken Swedes: report

Intoxicated Swedes apprehended by police would be placed in sobriety centres rather than jail cells, according to a forthcoming government report on dealing with substance abuse.

Nazi papers welcome biathlon guests
Germany

Nazi papers welcome biathlon guests

Guests attending the opening of the 2011 World Biathlon Championships in Siberia got a surprise when they found Nazi propaganda among the hors d'oeuvres at the reception.

Turkish model refused visa for beauty contest
Germany

Turkish model refused visa for beauty contest

A Turkish contestant in model competition due to be held in Germany next week has reportedly been denied a visa, sparking claims of discrimination.

German support for Libya no-fly zone grows
Germany

German support for Libya no-fly zone grows

In the wake of stepped-up air strikes in Libya, more German politicians are expressing support for a no-fly zone over the North African country.

‘Jihad Jane’ ally admits to Vilks murder plot
Sweden

‘Jihad Jane’ ally admits to Vilks murder plot

A female comrade of the woman dubbed "Jihad Jane" pleaded guilty Tuesday in US federal court to terror-related charges, officials said.