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Germany

Philipp Rösler: From Vietnamese orphanage to vice chancellor

Philipp Rösler, Germany's incoming economy minister and vice chancellor, is a qualified heart surgeon who was born in war-torn South Vietnam and moved to Europe after being adopted as an infant from an orphanage.

Rösler takes Economics Ministry in reshuffle
Germany

Rösler takes Economics Ministry in reshuffle

Philipp Rösler, Germany’s health minister, will take over the Economics Ministry it was announced on Tuesday, as he prepares to lead the Free Democratic Party (FDP).

Seven including baby die in autobahn smashes
Germany

Seven including baby die in autobahn smashes

Seven people died in two car crashes on German autobahns on Tuesday, including one baby who was killed when the car it was in was completely crushed under a truck.

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Sweden

Tax agency: DNA-test no proof of paternity

The Swedish Tax Agency (Skatteverket) does not want to recognise a DNA-test as confirmation of the paternity of a Sierra Leone man currently living with his son in Sundsvall.

Twisting tongues: Sweden’s sexiest dialect
Sweden

Twisting tongues: Sweden’s sexiest dialect

If you’re looking to boost your Swedish sex appeal, The Local's Karen Holst explains why enrolling in a Swedish language course in Gothenburg may be the ticket to wooing that potential Swedish sweetheart.

Court remands parents for ‘honour’ killing
Sweden

Court remands parents for ‘honour’ killing

The Swedish Supreme Court has ruled to remand the parents of man convicted of a so-called "honour" killing in Högsby, southern Sweden in 2005, the first time it has issued a remand ruling since the 1980s.

Merkel backs EU free trade deal with Japan
Germany

Merkel backs EU free trade deal with Japan

Germany backs the opening of talks on a free trade deal between Japan and the European Union, two of the world's economic giants, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday.

Flare causes stand fire at Swedish football match
Sweden

Flare causes stand fire at Swedish football match

One woman suffered burns and four people were apprehended by police after a flare caused a blaze on the terraces during a top-flight football derby between two local teams GAIS and IFK Göteborg, at the Ullevi arena in Gothenburg on Monday.

Westerwelle warns Syria of tighter EU sanctions
Germany

Westerwelle warns Syria of tighter EU sanctions

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle warned Syria on Tuesday that it would face tighter European Union sanctions if it continued its brutal crackdown against anti-government protests.

Wernher von Braun’s contribution to Nazi V-2 rocket questioned
Germany

Wernher von Braun’s contribution to Nazi V-2 rocket questioned

Newly unearthed documents challenge whether Wernher von Braun, Nazi physicist and crucial figure in the US space programme, was really the inventor of Hitler's infamous V-2 rocket.

Eurovision svengali Raab dominates song contest
Germany

Eurovision svengali Raab dominates song contest

With Germany hosting the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time in three decades, the spotlight has shifted to the influence wielded by entertainer Stefan Raab – the mastermind behind teen singing sensation Lena.

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Sweden

Muslim group takes over Swedish church

A Muslim group plans to turn a church into a mosque after Swedish pentecostalists decided to sell a superfluous property in Flen in eastern Sweden in a display of "Christian love".

Missing Malmö snake an ‘expensive hoax’: report
Sweden

Missing Malmö snake an ‘expensive hoax’: report

The deadly snake reportedly on the loose in a Malmö apartment block, prompting panic among residents and leaving a six figure bill for the ensuing hunt, was probably a hoax.

IOC boosts Munich bid to host 2018 Winter Olympics
Germany

IOC boosts Munich bid to host 2018 Winter Olympics

Germany’s bid to host the 2018 Winter Olympics received a boost on Tuesday with news that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) rates it nearly as highly as the favourite, South Korea, it emerged on Tuesday.

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Switzerland

Justice minister pledges asylum overhaul

The Swiss Refugee Council has praised justice minister Simonetta Sommarug for a proposal it said would help speed up the process of granting or rejecting asylum. 

Eurozone fury unleashed over German Greek leaks
Germany

Eurozone fury unleashed over German Greek leaks

Germany's European partners on Tuesday expressed their anger over high-level leaks in Berlin allegedly responsible for sparking speculation last week that Greece was considering leaving the eurozone.

Ivory Coast pursues Gbagbo over Swiss cash
Switzerland

Ivory Coast pursues Gbagbo over Swiss cash

The new Ivory Coast government has filed a criminal complaint against ousted former strongman Laurent Gbagbo in Switzerland for money laundering and to recover millions of dollars he squirreled away in Swiss banks, a lawyer defending the state said on Monday.

Ivory Coast pursues Gbagbo over Swiss cash
France

Ivory Coast pursues Gbagbo over Swiss cash

The new Ivory Coast government has filed a criminal complaint against ousted former strongman Laurent Gbagbo in Switzerland for money laundering and to recover millions of dollars he squirreled away in Swiss banks, a lawyer defending the state said on Monday.

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Sweden

Stockholmers ‘retire’ in droves to exploit pensioner discounts

Thousands of Swedes are claiming hefty pensioner discounts despite being in gainful employment, due a loophole enabling them to draw some of their pension in advance.

Microsoft confirms $8.5 billion Skype purchase
Sweden

Microsoft confirms $8.5 billion Skype purchase

Skype, the IP telephony company founded and part-owned by Swedish entrepreneur Niklas Zennström, has been bought bought by US software giant Microsoft, the firms confirmed on Tuesday afternoon.

Woman found guilty of Facebook bullying
Switzerland

Woman found guilty of Facebook bullying

A 19-year-old woman from St. Gallen has become the first person in Switzerland to be convicted of cyber-bullying after she used social networking site Facebook to insult a man who had complained about a local nightclub's all-night parties.

Bomb rocks popular Malmö restaurant
Sweden

Bomb rocks popular Malmö restaurant

A powerful explosion rocked Lilla Torg in central Malmö early Tuesday morning causing extension damage to one of the square's many restaurants.

Demjanjuk ‘Nazi guard’ trial verdict this week
Germany

Demjanjuk ‘Nazi guard’ trial verdict this week

The trial of 91-year-old alleged Nazi camp guard John Demjanjuk is due to end this week, marking a watershed moment in Germany's bid to deal with World War II crimes judicially.

Booming economy to hit pre-crisis levels
Germany

Booming economy to hit pre-crisis levels

Germany’s booming economy is likely to this month reach a level last seen before the 2008 global financial crisis, the Financial Times Deutschland reported on Tuesday.

Free Democrats spin personnel carrousel
Germany

Free Democrats spin personnel carrousel

Economy Minister Rainer Brüderle was tipped on Tuesday to take over the parliamentary group of Germany's beleaguered Free Democrats, allowing incoming FDP boss Philipp Rösler to inherit the key economy portfolio.

Saab recruits new North America head
Sweden

Saab recruits new North America head

Swedish car maker Saab AB has announced the recruitment of a top executive from Japanese firm Subaru to run its North American operations as it bids to rebuild its embattled brand.

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Sweden

Swede in US court over guns for drugs deal

A Swedish citizen nicknamed "Stallion" faced a US court on Monday and pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiring to supply weapons to Colombian guerillas in exchange for cocaine.