‘Life, it’s behind us, for me it was beautiful’
France

‘Life, it’s behind us, for me it was beautiful’

One inspirational Frenchman dominated the headlines this week when his wife announced his death at the age of 95. Stéphane Hessel, the former French Resistance fighter who inspired a global movement is The Local's French Face of the Week.

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Switzerland

Nurse posing with corpse sparks outrage

A nurse in Switzerland who posted pictures of herself on Facebook sitting next to the corpse of an old woman is coming under fire from her profession, while prosecutors say they have launched an investigation.

France introduces car breathalyser law – again
France

France introduces car breathalyser law – again

The confusion appears to be over. The French government confirmed on Friday that it will be compulsory for motorists to carry breathalyser kits in their cars. The move comes after the Interior Ministry has suspended legislation earlier this year.

‘Jihadist’ shopkeeper to be expelled from France
France

‘Jihadist’ shopkeeper to be expelled from France

A shopkeeper suspected of promoting armed jihad against France is to be deported back to his native Algeria, his lawyer confirmed on Friday.

Lufthansa cuts flights and services to Berlin
Germany

Lufthansa cuts flights and services to Berlin

Lufthansa, Germany's biggest airline, said on Friday it will cut back flights to and from Berlin in the face of the seemingly never-ending debacle surrounding the German capital's new airport.

‘All Berliners should be standing here today’
Germany

‘All Berliners should be standing here today’

Plans to tear down part of the Berlin Wall for a luxury apartment building sparked angry demonstrations on Friday to save the city's East Side Gallery. The Local hit the streets to see what people were saying.

Outrage over Heidi Klum ‘hot as Holocaust’ gibe
Germany

Outrage over Heidi Klum ‘hot as Holocaust’ gibe

An off-colour joke by US comedienne Joan Rivers suggesting German model Heidi Klum was as "hot" as a Nazi shoving Jews into a death camp oven has prompted international outrage.

Gay Ugandan couple to remain in Sweden
Sweden

Gay Ugandan couple to remain in Sweden

A couple who claimed to be the first Ugandan men to be legally married have learned they will be allowed to remain in Sweden after a flurry of death threats helped sway migration officials to drop a deportation order against one of them.

‘There is nowhere better to live than the Dordogne’
France

‘There is nowhere better to live than the Dordogne’

The Dordogne region of France is one of the most beautiful parts of the country, hence its popularity among expats and tourists. For this week's My France, estate agent Cate Carnduff from Ireland tells us about some of her favourite haunts.

Rich List: Cashed-up Spanish sportsmen
Spain

Rich List: Cashed-up Spanish sportsmen

Forbes magazine has just put together its annual rankings of the world's highest-paid athletes in advertising terms. Which Spanish sports star do you think is the 'King Midas' of endorsements?

‘Swedes have forgotten leftist US sympathizers’
Sweden

‘Swedes have forgotten leftist US sympathizers’

The CIA invested heavily in propaganda in Sweden during the early years of the Cold War to counteract Soviet influence, confirms a new documentary that includes details about left-leaning Swedes who sympathized with the US.

Sundsvall: ‘It’s like living in a wok pan’
Sweden

Sundsvall: ‘It’s like living in a wok pan’

Bird-watcher and nature enthusiast Leelene Karlsson presents Sundsvall for this week's My Sweden, explaining that a gigantic ice lolly, a cross-dressing singer, and life in a wok pan make Sundsvall the ideal Swedish town.

Blundering judge frees notorious ‘drug ring’
France

Blundering judge frees notorious ‘drug ring’

Police officers in France were left fuming after a blundering judge got in a muddle with his calendar and accidentally released ten alleged members of a notorious drug ring.

‘Success isn’t easy in a second language’
Spain

‘Success isn’t easy in a second language’

This week in My Spain we talk to Madrid-based musician Aaron Thomas about life in the big smoke, the crisis, and how he nearly gave up music before he recorded his newly-minted third album.

‘The kids should have alerted me to the horror’
Sweden

‘The kids should have alerted me to the horror’

In the first of a new column on music, life, and many other things Swedish, Paul Connolly takes us along for his first up-close experience with Melodifestivalen, and offers up his choices for Swedish album and gig of the month.

Hollande ‘most unpopular president in 30 years’
France

Hollande ‘most unpopular president in 30 years’

French president François Hollande was under the cosh on Friday as a new poll revealed he is the most unpopular head of state in 30 years.

Cautious Casillas braces for Barça backlash
Spain

Cautious Casillas braces for Barça backlash

Real Madrid captain Iker Casillas expects Barça will come out all guns blazing when the two meet again in the league on Saturday after Madrid's 3-1 victory over the Catalans on Tuesday.

Stats reveal ‘surprisingly strong’ Swedish economy
Sweden

Stats reveal ‘surprisingly strong’ Swedish economy

Sweden's economy grew by 1.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to the same period a year earlier, surprising analysts who had flagged for a possible recession.

Protesters block Berlin Wall gallery demolition
Germany

Protesters block Berlin Wall gallery demolition

Hundreds of angry demonstrators on Friday stopped part of the remaining stretch of the Berlin Wall from being torn down to make way for a planned block of luxury flats.

Vattenfall Germany under fire in Sweden
Germany

Vattenfall Germany under fire in Sweden

Germany's fourth-biggest electricity provider Vattenfall is coming under increasingly hostile scrutiny in its Swedish homeland - for its poor German environmental record and because it is failing to produce huge profits.

Spanish Supreme Court lifts Lleida burqa ban
Spain

Spanish Supreme Court lifts Lleida burqa ban

Spain's Supreme Court has given the thumbs down to a controversial burqa ban in the Catalan town of Lleida in a ruling with wide-reaching implications.

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Switzerland

Mobile phones set to match world’s population

The number of mobile telephones worldwide is set to catch up to the globe's population next year, the Geneva-based United Nations' telecommunications agency says.

Beheading: Briton’s killer put away for 20 years
Spain

Beheading: Briton’s killer put away for 20 years

The Bulgarian man who used a knife to behead an English grandmother on the holiday isle of Tenerife in 2011 will spend the next 20 years locked up in a psychiatric unit.

Sony slaps Beyoncé uploader with damages
Sweden

Sony slaps Beyoncé uploader with damages

Sony Music is demanding 1.5 million kronor ($200,000) in damages from a Swedish man who fileshared Beyoncé's as yet to be released album in a case that has legal experts scratching their heads.

Swiss-based Logitech lays off 140 employees
Switzerland

Swiss-based Logitech lays off 140 employees

Swiss electronics and computer peripherals company Logitech says it is cutting 140 jobs in a bid to save $16 million to $18 million in annual expenditures.

Clowns, Berlin Wall luxury and whiny soldiers
Germany

Clowns, Berlin Wall luxury and whiny soldiers

In this week's Weekly News Podcast, The Local's Ben Knight contends with clownish chancellor candidates, the second fall of the Berlin Wall for luxury flats, and Germany's allegedly whiny soldiers.

Bungling burglars pilfer vintage Bordeaux
France

Bungling burglars pilfer vintage Bordeaux

When burglars broke into the cellars of the prestigious Bordeaux wine producer Chateau Palmer, making off with €72,000 worth of grand cru, they thought they had got away with it. But the robbers never got the chance to crack open a bottle.

Woman dies after being shot in the face
Sweden

Woman dies after being shot in the face

A 45-year-old woman in Gothenburg has died in hospital after she was shot in the face on Friday morning when she was out for a walk.

Fast food dethrones traditional French cuisine
France

Fast food dethrones traditional French cuisine

A report released in France has dealt a severe blow to the country's renowned gastronomy by revealing sales of hamburgers, pizzas, hotdogs and other fast food grub have surpassed those of traditional restaurant dishes for the first time.

‘You don’t feel the cold in Osnabrück’
Germany

‘You don’t feel the cold in Osnabrück’

Get The Local flavour of Germany with our series offering an insider's take on people's adopted home towns. This week, Mohamed Selim Khalil shares his fondness for Osnabrück

Jump in Swiss jobs good news for expats
Switzerland

Jump in Swiss jobs good news for expats

The number of jobs offered in Switzerland has jumped by seven percent since the start of the year, offering encouragement to those considering a move to the country.

Swiss poised to slash ‘abusive’ pay for execs
Switzerland

Swiss poised to slash ‘abusive’ pay for execs

If the polls are right, Switzerland is set on Sunday to enshrine what are touted as the toughest controls on pay for executives in the world.

French study ‘solves’ global warming riddle
France

French study ‘solves’ global warming riddle

French researchers this week claimed they have answered a riddle that has long perplexed scientists.

Two killed at French nuclear power station
France

Two killed at French nuclear power station

Two workers were killed and a third was seriously injured when a raised platform they were standing on collapsed at one of France's largest nuclear plants.

Suspect: ‘I wanted to be like Tony Soprano’
Sweden

Suspect: ‘I wanted to be like Tony Soprano’

A man has confessed to police in western Sweden that the hit US television programme The Sopranos inspired him to embark on a blackmail campaign featuring threatening letters and broken windows.

House prices in Paris on their way down
France

House prices in Paris on their way down

In Paris it’s hard enough to find a suitably-sized cupboard that’s affordable. But there was good news for those seeking to buy a home on Thursday with confirmation that house prices in the French capital were on their way down.

Tatters of Kohl family life return to public spotlight
Germany

Tatters of Kohl family life return to public spotlight

What remains of Helmut Kohl's family life again staggered into the spotlight on Thursday evening, courtesy of his two estranged sons who publicly attacked the former chancellor's new wife while promoting a book about their mother.

Sweden launches new weapons amnesty
Sweden

Sweden launches new weapons amnesty

Sweden on Friday commenced with its first weapons amnesty in more than five years, allowing anyone to turn illegal firearms in to police with no questions asked.

Russia mocks Sweden’s lack of military might
Sweden

Russia mocks Sweden’s lack of military might

Russians have seized on statements by the top Swedish military commander about Sweden's limited capacity to defend itself, responding with an Abba-inspired satirical jab broadcast on national television.

Fossil-hunter finds ancient hedgehog
Germany

Fossil-hunter finds ancient hedgehog

An amateur fossil-hunter in Germany has dug up the remains of a long-extinct relative of a hedgehog. It is in such good condition that scientists reckon they may even find remains of the animal's last meal - eaten 47 million years ago.

German ‘Wolf Town’ learns to love its lupus
Germany

German ‘Wolf Town’ learns to love its lupus

Thirteen years after wolves returned to an eastern German village, its residents have not only overcome age-old fears to live peacefully alongside the predator but even come to enjoy the benefits of its presence.