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Switzerland

Spy stole government data: charges

Espionage posing a security threat to Switzerland was uncovered through the discovery of undisclosed data stolen by a government IT worker, says Michael Lauber, the country’s attorney general.

Wine and dine your way around Europe

Wine and dine your way around Europe

Explore some of Europe’s best wining and dining spots with an InterRail Global Pass, as your train journey takes you through wine routes, gourmet centres and traditional cuisine in Portugal, Spain and France.

Wine and dine your way around Europe
Germany

Wine and dine your way around Europe

Explore some of Europe’s best wining and dining spots with an InterRail Global Pass, as your train journey takes you through wine routes, gourmet centres and traditional cuisine in Portugal, Spain and France.

Reinfeldt heading to Paris for EU budget talks
Sweden

Reinfeldt heading to Paris for EU budget talks

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt will travel to Paris next week to discuss EU budget issues with French President Francois Hollande as Sweden faces a potentially drastic hike in EU fees.

Valls pledges hard line against Islamists
France

Valls pledges hard line against Islamists

France's Socialist government vowed Thursday to do more to integrate the country's Muslims but warned that it would not tolerate the country becoming a hotbed of Islamic radicalism.

Porsche driver fined for sexy ice cream romp
Sweden

Porsche driver fined for sexy ice cream romp

A half-naked Swedish woman trying to beat a reckless driving fine told police she was “licking ice cream” off a male driver’s body as the couple raced down the motorway in an open-topped Porsche.

Wine and dine your way around Europe
Sweden

Wine and dine your way around Europe

Explore some of Europe’s best wining and dining spots with an InterRail Global Pass, as your train journey takes you through wine routes, gourmet centres and traditional cuisine in Portugal, Spain and France.

Starbucks preps for full-on Swedish invasion
Sweden

Starbucks preps for full-on Swedish invasion

Starbucks coffee shops may soon be a familiar sight on Stockholm streets as the US chain aims to beef up its presence in Scandinavia following a "milestone" deal with a Norwegian partner.

France urges Japan to suspend executions
France

France urges Japan to suspend executions

France on Thursday urged Japan to restore a moratorium on capital punishment after the hanging of two death-row inmates which took to seven the number of executions carried out this year.

European arrest warrant for teacher who fled to France
France

European arrest warrant for teacher who fled to France

A European Arrest Warrant has been issued for a married British teacher who ran away to France with a 15-year-old girl in his maths class, British police said on Thursday.

European Central Bank head will talk with MPs
Germany

European Central Bank head will talk with MPs

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi will hold talks with German lawmakers next month, parliament said Thursday, amid uproar over his plan to buy up the bonds of struggling eurozone countries.

Mum ‘killed five babies’ to keep standard of living
Germany

Mum ‘killed five babies’ to keep standard of living

A woman has admitted killing five of her own babies – in order to preserve her family’s standard of living, a German prosecutor said on Thursday.

Green light for prayer calls at Swedish mosque
Sweden

Green light for prayer calls at Swedish mosque

A mosque in the south Stockholm suburb of Botkyrka has received approval to make prayer calls from its minaret, the first time such permission has ever been granted in Sweden.

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Sweden

Outrage over Swedish city’s ‘sex and booze’ test

Public employees in northern Sweden were outraged this week after being forced to answer questions about their sex-life, bowel movements, and alcohol habits in a personality test given to them by the local municipality.

What’s on in Germany: Sept 27 – Oct 3
Germany

What’s on in Germany: Sept 27 – Oct 3

This Week's Highlights: African film in Cologne, an apple festival in Frankfurt, and a concert to celebrate the Jewish New Year in Munich.

Business booms at Bordeaux drone show
France

Business booms at Bordeaux drone show

The global market for drones is expanding rapidly and they are increasingly being used for non-military purposes, industry leaders at Europe's second ever drone show said Thursday.

Hockey team brothel sponsor turns others off
Germany

Hockey team brothel sponsor turns others off

A German ice hockey team which signed a shirt sponsorship deal with a local brothel and revelled in the attention the arrangement attracted, has lost another sponsor which left in disgust.

September to end on a damp note
Germany

September to end on a damp note

As the mornings get darker, getting out of bed could prove challenging for Germans over the next few days as rain, clouds and cooling temperatures set in. Only on Sunday will there be a sunny break in the autumnal gloom.

Paris motor show opens to stalling European market
France

Paris motor show opens to stalling European market

The Paris Motor Show opens with the automobile sector in crisis mode amid deep gloom over the future of the European market, key to the survival of several top manufacturers.

Eight reasons to visit the Göteborg Book Fair
Sweden

Eight reasons to visit the Göteborg Book Fair

With the Göteborg Book Fair running from September 27-30, The Local offer up eight great reasons to head to Sweden's second largest city and sink your teeth into some Nordic novels.

Merkel: I didn’t cut corners on nuke waste
Germany

Merkel: I didn’t cut corners on nuke waste

Chancellor Angela Merkel has denied neglecting safety concerns during her involvement with the controversial nuclear waste storage site at Gorleben.

Zidane gets bronze headbutt statue
France

Zidane gets bronze headbutt statue

The infamous headbutt that French football legend Zinedine Zidane landed on an Italian during a World Cup final has been transformed into a giant statue and displayed in front of the Pompidou Centre in Paris.

Bill Clinton ponders French presidency run
France

Bill Clinton ponders French presidency run

Former US president Bill Clinton says he could in theory run for president in Ireland or France – but admitted his bad French would make him "toast" in an election there.

Woman stabs ex to death after he tortures her
Germany

Woman stabs ex to death after he tortures her

German police called to the scene of a fatal stabbing were plunged into a mystery worthy of a television series – the man’s former girlfriend who had killed him was still tied up and had been tortured.

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France

Hundreds of iPhone 5s stolen in Marseilles heist

A shipment of several hundred iPhone 5 handsets has been stolen at gunpoint from a man driving a fresh delievery to an industrial area in Vitrolles, near Marseilles.

Swedish rights prize to Afghan burka opponent
Sweden

Swedish rights prize to Afghan burka opponent

Afghan human rights activist, ex-minister and burka opponent Sima Samar on Thursday won the Swedish Right Livelihood Award honouring those who work to improve the lives of others.

New grandparents ‘to have time off work’
Germany

New grandparents ‘to have time off work’

German grandparents could be legally entitled to time off work to help look after new grandchildren, initial details from a family ministry proposal suggest.

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France

Speeder caught again – for 485th time

A man who was banned for driving after clocking up 484 speeding tickets between 2006 and 2009 has been caught again - this time for driving in a hire car in Luxembourg.

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Switzerland

Switzerland won’t tighten assisted suicide rules

Proposals to tighten rules on assisted suicide in Switzerland - including a possible ban on suicide tourism - have been defeated by the country's lawmakers.

Breivik seeks return of ‘Knights Templar’ outfit
Norway

Breivik seeks return of ‘Knights Templar’ outfit

Norwegian terrorist Anders Behring Breivik has requested the return of a dress uniform and other items which he connects to a clandestine group called the Knights Templar.

Hagen halts Muslim prayer at Oslo school
Norway

Hagen halts Muslim prayer at Oslo school

An Oslo high school has been told by the city officials to close a Muslim prayer room following criticism from Carl I. Hagen, a city councillor for the right-wing populist Progress Party.

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France

President spends €900,000 on UN trip

President Francois Hollande’s bill during his trip to New York for the United Nations General Assembly has been revealed - and is €100,000 less expensive that of Nicolas Sarkozy’s last year.

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Switzerland

Parents who divorce to get joint custody

Parents who divorce in Switzerland will in future automatically be granted joint custody of children, the country's parliament has decided. The law will also be applied retroactively to parents who currently have a different arrangement.

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Switzerland

Church ‘sorry’ for Swiss child home torture

The Catholic diocese of Basel apologised on Wednesday after two studies showed how boys in its 15 reformatories in Canton Lucerne were systematically subjected to torture and sexual abuse over a forty year period.

Strong krona strips H&M’s quarterly profits
Sweden

Strong krona strips H&M’s quarterly profits

Swedish group H&M, which makes and retails inexpensive clothes, reported almost steady net profit for the third quarter on Thursday, saying the rise of the krona had contained earnings.

Starbucks sets sights on Norway expansion
Norway

Starbucks sets sights on Norway expansion

US coffee shop chain Starbucks aims to become the market leader in Scandinavia within three years after joining forces with Norwegian businessman Jens Ulltveit-Moe.

Blood and booze for foreigners at Oktoberfest
Germany

Blood and booze for foreigners at Oktoberfest

An American man lost his wife at the Munich Oktoberfest this week – and after spending half the night looking for her, called the police for help.

BMW to create 3,000 jobs in return for flexibility
Germany

BMW to create 3,000 jobs in return for flexibility

German car manufacturer BMW will create around 3,000 new jobs by 2013, with many contract workers possibly finding themselves being offered an official position.

Union agreement halts looming school strike
Sweden

Union agreement halts looming school strike

Sweden’s teacher unions on Wednesday came to an agreement with employers about a rise in pay, narrowly avoiding a strike many believed was imminent.

Swede paid friend to serve his prison sentence
Sweden

Swede paid friend to serve his prison sentence

A 37-year-old Gothenburg man managed to avoid jail time by paying a friend to serve his prison sentence while disappearing off abroad.

Merkel: stop worrying about Muslims
Germany

Merkel: stop worrying about Muslims

The first online “tele-townhall” meeting between Chancellor Angela Merkel and some 7,000 of her party members took place on Wednesday evening, during which she asked Germany for more tolerance towards Muslims.

‘We will withstand any situation’: Ecuador
Sweden

‘We will withstand any situation’: Ecuador

Ecuador said Wednesday it is prepared to shelter Julian Assange inside its London embassy for years if necessary as it negotiates the WikiLeaks founder's fate with Britain and Sweden.