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Germany

Pensioner gets life in prison for killing neighbours

A German pensioner was on Thursday sentenced to life in prison for killing three neighbours in a garden allotment after a dispute over garbage and trespassing, a court said.

EU to probe Germany’s rescue of Hypo Real Estate
Germany

EU to probe Germany’s rescue of Hypo Real Estate

European regulators took aim on Thursday at German efforts to rescue Hypo Real Estate, the country's biggest casualty of the global banking crisis, as Berlin moved a step closer towards its nationalization.

Opel cuts executive pay
Germany

Opel cuts executive pay

German carmaker Opel, a unit of General Motors, has said it will slash the salaries of around 300 executives in Europe as part of a drastic cost-cutting program.

What’s on in Germany: May 7 – 13
Germany

What’s on in Germany: May 7 – 13

This Week's Highlights: A gypsy street festival in Berlin, Dixieland in Dresden, and Hamburg hosts a birthday bash for its 820-year-old harbour.

Special forces nab major Taliban leader
Germany

Special forces nab major Taliban leader

German special forces in northern Afghanistan have captured a high-ranking Taliban leader suspected of involvement in attacks on German soldiers, the website of news magazine Der Spiegel reported on Thursday.

Exhibition with corpses having sex riles Berlin
Germany

Exhibition with corpses having sex riles Berlin

Gunther von Hagens, the man behind the controversial anatomical Body Worlds exhibitions, has once again sparked outrage – this time by showing dissected corpses having sex. The Netzeitung’s Kerstin Rottmann looks at his lastest well-calculated provocation in Berlin.

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Sweden

Economic downturn hits Stockholm businesses

The situation for businesses in Stockholm is now worse than it was following the bursting of the IT bubble, according to a report from the city’s Chamber of Commerce.

Bringing boundary-breaking art books to Berlin
Germany

Bringing boundary-breaking art books to Berlin

German art book powerhouse Taschen just opened a new flagship store in Berlin. The Local dropped by the opening party and spoke with founder Benedikt Taschen about his boundary-busting relationship to aesthetics – from erotica to El Greco.

Winnenden massacre could lead to paintball and laser tag ban
Germany

Winnenden massacre could lead to paintball and laser tag ban

The German government has agreed to tighten gun laws and ban games such as paintball and laser tag because lawmakers say they “simulate killing” that could spark tragedies such as the Winnenden school massacre.

ECB cuts rates to historic low
Germany

ECB cuts rates to historic low

The European Central Bank on Thursday cut its main interest rate by 25 basis points to 1.00 percent – marking a new record low for borrowing costs in the eurozone.

Boris Becker bares private life on internet TV channel
Germany

Boris Becker bares private life on internet TV channel

German tennis legend Boris Becker is launching his own internet TV channel to allow fans a peek into his very public private life and upcoming wedding to a Dutch model, Bild newspaper reported on Thursday.

Porn king reports police over crime gang sting
Sweden

Porn king reports police over crime gang sting

Swedish porn baron Berth Milton has filed a complaint accusing police of using him in a sting operation targeting one of Sweden’s most dangerous criminal gangs without his knowledge.

Thief caught red-handed on stolen webcam
Sweden

Thief caught red-handed on stolen webcam

A manager in the Swedish elderly care sector has been connected to a spate of thefts after one of his victims managed to identify the suspect using a remotely controlled web camera.

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Sweden

Record month for The Local

The Local has recorded its most successful month ever with almost 1.5 million visitors in April across its sites in Sweden, Germany and Switzerland.

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Sweden

Bear attacks elk at kids’ playground

Stunned witnesses looked on in disbelief on Wednesday as a brown bear chased and attacked an elk by a children's playground in Hede in northern Sweden.

No European loan for Volvo Cars
Sweden

No European loan for Volvo Cars

A bid by Volvo Cars to secure a €200 million ($266 million) loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) fell apart after talks with the Swedish government broke down, the company said on Thursday.

Germany confirms tenth swine flu case
Germany

Germany confirms tenth swine flu case

A tenth case of the swine flu virus has been diagnosed in Germany in the eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt, authorities said on Thursday.

‘Curfews and police’ can curb Rosengård fires
Sweden

‘Curfews and police’ can curb Rosengård fires

A prominent Liberal Party (Folkpartiet) Riksdag member on Wednesday called for targeted curfews and more police in Malmö’s Rosengård neighbourhood just hours before a communal refuse facility in the area burned to the ground.

Art off the beaten track in Stockholm
Sweden

Art off the beaten track in Stockholm

Art critic Katarina Wadstein MacLeod slips into the suburbs and side streets of Stockholm in search of hidden gems outside the mainstream.

Tiefensee says former East Germans get no respect
Germany

Tiefensee says former East Germans get no respect

German Transport Minister Wolfgang Tiefensee, who is also commissioner for issues concerning eastern Germany, complained Thursday that there was too little respect for the achievements of former East German citizens.

Berlin court refuses to ban brothel near posh neighbourhood
Germany

Berlin court refuses to ban brothel near posh neighbourhood

A German court has said it would not ban a brothel set up in an apartment in a posh district in western Berlin on moral grounds after judges inspected the premises and found they were discreet.

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Sweden

Sweden criticized for lack of effort on minority languages

Sweden has been taken to task by the Council of Europe for a lack of progress in raising social awareness about and promoting educational programs in the country’s five national minority languages.

Court finds Swede’s under-robe rubbing ‘not masturbation’
Sweden

Court finds Swede’s under-robe rubbing ‘not masturbation’

A woman from Lund in southern Sweden accused her 38-year-old neighbour of making unwanted advances, but a court ruled the man may simply have had an itch.

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Sweden

‘Make accused rapists prove consent’: experts

Two legal experts want to see changes to Sweden sex crimes laws to require a man accused of rape to prove he had the consent of the woman with whom he had sex.