‘Cautious optimism’ over Saab’s second escape from bankruptcy
Sweden

‘Cautious optimism’ over Saab’s second escape from bankruptcy

While the sale of Saab Automobile may have once again helped the troubled Swedish automaker avoid bankruptcy, uncertainties about possible layoffs and obtaining necessary approvals remain, the AFP's Nina Larsson explains.

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Switzerland

Wedding pastor ‘wants to rip me off’: Boris Becker to Swiss court

German tennis legend Boris Becker appeared in a Swiss court on Friday to dispute a 9,600 franc ($11,125) fee sought by the minister who presided at his wedding, Swiss news agency ATS reported.

German population to shrink by a fifth by 2060
Germany

German population to shrink by a fifth by 2060

Germany's population will plunge by 17 million inhabitants – a fifth of its current size – by 2060, according to a demography study presented by Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich this week.

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France

French court cancels permit for Marseille mega-mosque

A French court on Thursday cancelled a construction permit for a mega-mosque in the southern city of Marseille that had been touted as a potential symbol of Islam's growing place in France.

Scientists revisit ‘faster-than-light’ experiment
Switzerland

Scientists revisit ‘faster-than-light’ experiment

Scientists who threw down the gauntlet to physics by reporting particles that broke the Universe's speed limit said on Friday they were taking a fresh look at their contested experiment.

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Switzerland

Switzerland-based businessman jailed for smuggling

A Belgrade court Friday convicted controversial Serb businessman Stanko Subotic in absentia and sentenced him to six years in prison for smuggling cigarettes in the 1990s, the Beta news agency reported.

Swedish court bans niqab-wearing women
Sweden

Swedish court bans niqab-wearing women

Three women wearing head scarves completely shielding their faces were denied entry to a Gothenburg courtroom on Friday during the remand hearing of one of the suspects in the Röda Sten murder plot case.

Hungry Germans happily adopt Turkish döner
Germany

Hungry Germans happily adopt Turkish döner

Discussions of integration generally focus on how well immigrants have adapted to their new country – but half a century after Turks started moving to Germany, few things underscore their broad societal impact here more than the ubiquitous döner kebab.

Socialists drop DSK amid new sleaze claims
France

Socialists drop DSK amid new sleaze claims

Five months after his arrest in New York on attempted rape charges, Dominique Strauss-Kahn is still making lurid headlines and France's Socialists are breathing a sigh of relief at a narrow escape.

Rubbish law aims to boost recycling
Germany

Rubbish law aims to boost recycling

German households should recycle even more of their rubbish following the passage of a new law by the Bundestag on Friday, aiming to reduce the country’s consumption of raw materials.

‘The deal was crucial for Saab’: expert
Sweden

‘The deal was crucial for Saab’: expert

After months of uncertainty cash-strapped carmaker Saab might finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, as Chinese firms Pang Da and Youngman announced on Friday that they will buy 100 percent of the shares of Saab Automobile.

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Switzerland

Consumer watchdog in price protection probe

Switzerland's Federal Competition Commission (COMCO) is investigating several companies that have allegedly used questionable tactics to work around the strong Swiss franc.

Court sets date to rule on Assange extradition
Sweden

Court sets date to rule on Assange extradition

The High Court in London will rule on Wednesday on Sweden's bid to secure the extradition from Britain of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange over rape allegations, the court said on Friday.

Activist wrote threat letters in his own blood
Sweden

Activist wrote threat letters in his own blood

A 21-year-old animal rights activist is being prosecuted at the Gothenburg District Court, suspected of arson and writing threat letters, sometimes in his own blood.

Sunshine to burn off morning fog
Germany

Sunshine to burn off morning fog

Mornings full of thick, grey fog will continue to greet Germany’s early risers, but the bright reds and yellows of autumn will be highlighted by sunshine-filled and comfortable afternoons across the country over the weekend.

Muslim group to deploy ‘Jewish star’ at Bern rally
Switzerland

Muslim group to deploy ‘Jewish star’ at Bern rally

The Islamic Central Council of Switzerland (ICCS), a conservative Muslim group, has chosen a symbol reminiscent of the Jewish Star of David for a planned protest against Islamophobia this weekend.

Prosecutor: slave auction was ‘costume party’
Sweden

Prosecutor: slave auction was ‘costume party’

A ”slave auction” held by a Lund student group in April was a ”costume party” meaning no charges will be filed against the organizers, according to the prosecution authority in Skåne in southern Sweden.

Court stops fast-track bailout fund committee
Germany

Court stops fast-track bailout fund committee

Germany's top court Friday stopped a new fast-track committee appointed to approve emergency measures to tackle the eurozone crisis, potentially slowing decisions by the eurozone paymaster.

Police slammed for ‘slow’ response
Sweden

Police slammed for ‘slow’ response

Swedish police officers' slow response to the spectacular helicopter robbery of a G4S cash depot in Västberga south of Stockholm in 2009 has come in for stinging criticism from the inspection unit of the National Swedish Police Board (Rikspolisstyrelsen).

Seven billion people ‘a catastrophe’: professor
Norway

Seven billion people ‘a catastrophe’: professor

“We’re behaving like spoiled egoists,” a University of Bergen zoology professor has said of a world too busy to contemplate the perils of the world's rocketing population growth.

Should Norway help bail out the eurozone?
Norway

Should Norway help bail out the eurozone?

With the European currency in disarray, Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt revealed this week that European leaders have floated the idea of asking Norway, with its huge oil fund, for assistance. But should Norway come to the rescue if the EU puts out a mayday call?

Discover some of Stockholm’s secrets
Sweden

Discover some of Stockholm’s secrets

New to Stockholm or looking to rediscover some of the things that make it special? Check out this short "video tour" led by a local tour guide.

Augsburg cop killers possibly drug dealers
Germany

Augsburg cop killers possibly drug dealers

Police hunting two men who shot dead an officer after what was described as a “James Bond” type chase in Augsburg, say the suspects may have been involved in a big drug deal.

Mountain halo design wins architecture prize
Norway

Mountain halo design wins architecture prize

An Oslo-based team of architects has won an international jury’s prize for an “enrapturing” halo-on-a-mountain design for an alpine lookout and its panoramic pathway.

Nine hurt in Bremen carnival ride accident
Germany

Nine hurt in Bremen carnival ride accident

A passenger pod broke off a spinning carnival ride and hurtled into a crowd of spectators in Bremen on Thursday evening, leaving several people hurt and one woman critically injured.

Johnny Hallyday to give first UK concert
France

Johnny Hallyday to give first UK concert

Johnny Hallyday, sometimes called "the French Elvis Presley," will give his first ever UK concert when he appears at the Royal Albert Hall in London in 2012.

French supermarket worker keeps job after online campaign
France

French supermarket worker keeps job after online campaign

A supermarket cashier who was threatened with the sack after picking up a discarded special offer coupon will keep her job after an online campaign was mounted to support her.

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France

Silver statuette is unknown Rodin: expert

A French art expert unveiled evidence on Thursday he says proves that a silver statuette of a "wounded woman" is an unknown work by Auguste Rodin, depicting his lover and disciple Camille Claudel.

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France

OK to fire headscarf-wearing employee: court

After a three year dispute, the court of appeal in Versailles told a children's nursery on Thursday they had the right to fire a woman who refused to remove her veil for work.

Chinese firms in deal to buy Saab Automobile
Sweden

Chinese firms in deal to buy Saab Automobile

Chinese automakers Pang Da and Youngman have agreed to purchase Saab Automobile, according to a statement issued Friday by Saab owner Swedish Automobile.

Sarkozy woos voters after euro deal
France

Sarkozy woos voters after euro deal

Fresh from clinching a deal on the euro, French president Nicolas Sarkozy sought to convince voters on Thursday he was best-placed to steer the country ahead of a tough election fight next year.

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Norway

Norway unfreezes aid to Afghanistan fund

Norway on Thursday said it would restart contributions to the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF), nearly two months after it announced a freeze on aid over corruption.

T-Rex descendant found in Ruhr Valley
Germany

T-Rex descendant found in Ruhr Valley

Palaeontologists say the parts of a fossilized skeleton found in the Ruhr Valley during construction work two years ago belong to a previously undiscovered dinosaur that could be a relative of the fearsome Tyrannosaurus rex.

Sex change couple may be able to stay married
France

Sex change couple may be able to stay married

A couple from Brittany were one step closer to becoming the first legally married same sex couple in France on Thursday after they cleared a legal hurdle to have the husband's sex change legally recognized.

Swedish lunch lady in pole dance protest
Sweden

Swedish lunch lady in pole dance protest

Students and staff at a school near Uppsala in eastern Sweden were shocked to see one of the school cafeteria staff performing an erotic pole dance in response to complaints about inedible food.

Swedish ‘baby boomer’ crime on the rise: agency
Sweden

Swedish ‘baby boomer’ crime on the rise: agency

The number of elderly criminal suspects in Sweden is increasing, according to fresh figures from the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brottsförebyggande rådet, Brå).

Wolves likely to spread across Germany
Germany

Wolves likely to spread across Germany

Wolves are doing so well in Germany, and adapting to so many different habitats, that they are likely to spread from their current strongholds in the eastern parts of the country to become part of the natural landscape nationwide.

‘Turks are a part of German culture’
Germany

‘Turks are a part of German culture’

Fifty years after the first Turks came to Germany, Michael Hofmann, an expert in Turkish-German relations, measures the influence the immigration has had on Germany.

Mass faintings at H&M factory in Cambodia
Sweden

Mass faintings at H&M factory in Cambodia

Over 200 Cambodian workers fainted this week in a factory which manufacturers clothes for Swedish fashion giant H&M.