Eight motorists dead after freak sandstorm
Germany

Eight motorists dead after freak sandstorm

At least eight people died Friday in a huge blaze on a motorway in eastern Germany after a freak sandstorm caused pile-ups, police said.

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Sweden

Bosnian-born Swede convicted of war crimes

A Stockholm court on Friday sentenced a Bosnian-born Swedish citizen to five years in prison for war crimes committed against Serb prisoners during the war in the former Yugoslavia.

Most Swedes sober when losing their virginity: study
Sweden

Most Swedes sober when losing their virginity: study

Three out of four Swedes are sober when they have sex for the first time, a new study shows.

Allergies take their toll on household pets
Switzerland

Allergies take their toll on household pets

Red eyes and itchy noses are no longer only problems for humans, according to veterinarians.

Reichstag dome reopening for tourists after terror alert
Germany

Reichstag dome reopening for tourists after terror alert

One of Berlin’s most popular tourist attractions, the dome at the Reichstag parliamentary building, will be reopened to tourists on April 21 after being closed due to security concerns for the last several months.

Berlin zooms in on Euro-Iranian bank
Germany

Berlin zooms in on Euro-Iranian bank

The German government is tightening its monitoring of the Hamburg-based European-Iranian Trade Bank, which was at the centre of a controversy this week regarding Indian purchases of Iranian oil.

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Sweden

Eight years for ‘dusk and dawn’ pyromaniac

Southern Sweden's so-called ‘dusk and dawn’ pyromaniac faces eight years in prison after the Ystad District Court in Ystad found him guilty of aggravated arson.

Stieg Larsson: the man behind the books
Sweden

Stieg Larsson: the man behind the books

While Stieg Larsson's Millennium crime trilogy turned him into a global phenomenon, the late Swedish author never dreamed of being famous, his Swedish biographer tells The Local's Geoff Mortimore.

Major spending boost for Swedish railways
Sweden

Major spending boost for Swedish railways

The Swedish government on Friday announced plans to invest an additional 800 million kronor ($128 million) in the country's rail system during 2011 following a harsh winter in which the country's trains were plagued by malfunctions.

Tougher rules to protect Sweden’s berry pickers
Sweden

Tougher rules to protect Sweden’s berry pickers

The Swedish Migration Board (Migrationsverket) has tightened regulations for hiring seasonal berry pickers ahead of the 2011 season.

Merkel ‘Berlusconizing’ politics, philosopher claims
Germany

Merkel ‘Berlusconizing’ politics, philosopher claims

One of Germany’s most famous living philosophers, Jürgen Habermas, has accused Chancellor Angela Merkel of “Berlusconizing” the political landscape with her brazen efforts to hold power at all costs.

Sweden vows to fight EU over smelly fish
Sweden

Sweden vows to fight EU over smelly fish

Sweden’s most malodorous delicacy will continue to stink up households across Sweden if the government gets its way in the EU.

Olofsson denies knowing of Vattenfall payouts
Sweden

Olofsson denies knowing of Vattenfall payouts

Minister for Energy and Centre party leader Maud Olofsson knew of the golden parachutes to Vattenfall bosses, several sources have revealed to Swedish media.

Exports remain strong with 2.7 percent rise
Germany

Exports remain strong with 2.7 percent rise

German exports picked up in February after a decline in January, official figures showed Friday, another sign of sustained economic activity in Europe's powerhouse.

Boring Steinmeier charms his way back into Germany’s heart
Germany

Boring Steinmeier charms his way back into Germany’s heart

Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the owlish Social Democrat deemed too boring to be chancellor when he ran against Angela Merkel in 2009, is now the most popular politician in the country, a poll revealed Friday.

No babies for cross-eyed opossum Heidi, zoo says
Germany

No babies for cross-eyed opossum Heidi, zoo says

Germany’s beloved cross-eyed opossum Heidi will have to do without romance for the time being, the Leipzig Zoo said Friday. There are no plans to breed the furry marsupial just yet.

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Sweden

Sweden fails its Roma minority: report

Sweden still fails to live up to the Council of Europe’s demands to protect the Roma people.

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Switzerland

Zug, Zurich best for business: study

Low taxes and ideal locations help make Zug and Zurich hotspots for setting up companies in Switzerland, a new study has found.

Switzerland swept up in Bieber-mania
Switzerland

Switzerland swept up in Bieber-mania

As teenager pop sensation Justin Bieber prepares to take the stage in Zurich, young Swiss fans can hardly contain their excitment.

Culture Night offers cash-strapped Stockholmers a free night out
Sweden

Culture Night offers cash-strapped Stockholmers a free night out

Nearly 70 museums and cultural institutions across Stockholm will open their doors to the public for free on Saturday in a bid to bring the city's cultural offerings to a wider audience, contributor Anita Badejo discovers.

Court defends magazine ‘rich lists’
Germany

Court defends magazine ‘rich lists’

The media have the right to publish the estimated fortunes of the super-rich, a Munich court ruled this week in a landmark decision pitting privacy against the public’s right to know.

Police job dissatisfaction on the rise, union says
Germany

Police job dissatisfaction on the rise, union says

The police union has warned of growing dissatisfaction among officers ahead of a survey to be released Friday that shows the depth of police anger about pay and conditions.

Doctor visit text reminders violate patient privacy: health board
Sweden

Doctor visit text reminders violate patient privacy: health board

Text message reminders for appointments with doctors or dentists may soon be a thing of the past in Sweden.

Dortmund star bets haircut on Bundesliga title
Germany

Dortmund star bets haircut on Bundesliga title

With Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund facing a tough clash at Hamburg on Saturday, Germany midfielder Kevin Grosskreutz insists he will only cut his hair once his team lift the title.

Bundeswehr bound for Libya peace mission
Germany

Bundeswehr bound for Libya peace mission

After refusing to contribute to an armed intervention in Libya, Germany is set to send troops on a humanitarian mission, with major party leaders saying Friday they would support such a plan.

Photographer denies ‘stalking’ Queen Silvia
Sweden

Photographer denies ‘stalking’ Queen Silvia

The photographer accused by the Swedish Royal Court of stalking Queen Silvia during a recent visit to New York denies that he caused her to fall and hurt her foot.

Hospital cleans out skeletons in its closet
Sweden

Hospital cleans out skeletons in its closet

Skeletons in the collections of Helsingborgs hospital, believed to have come to Sweden through an illegal trade in bones, may finally get a proper burial.