Man jailed 12 years for torturing infant daughter
Switzerland

Man jailed 12 years for torturing infant daughter

The canton of Zurich's high court sentenced a 28-year-old man to 12 years in jail for brutally torturing his infant daughter because he was convinced he was not the child’s father.

Swiss helicopter crashes leave eight people dead
Switzerland

Swiss helicopter crashes leave eight people dead

Investigations are under way into two helicopter crashes in Switzerland that have left eight people dead over the last three days.

WhatsApp goes ‘Spanish’ as ‘wasap’ gets nod
Spain

WhatsApp goes ‘Spanish’ as ‘wasap’ gets nod

The Spanish words 'wasap' and 'wasapear' — both variants of the name of WhatsApp, the popular instant messaging service for smartphones — have been given the backing of one of Spain's language heavyweights.

Fiat eye stake in Corriere publisher
Italy

Fiat eye stake in Corriere publisher

Trading in RCS Mediagroup, the publisher of Italy's best-selling newspaper Corriere della Sera, was suspended on Monday after its price soared on the news that auto giant Fiat could become its biggest shareholder.

Mother of two crowned Italy’s Miss Mamma
Italy

Mother of two crowned Italy’s Miss Mamma

A 35-year-old mother of two has been named Italy’s 20th ‘Miss Mamma’, at a final in the seaside resort of Gatteo a Mare.

Catalan cop jailed for tow truck revenge
Spain

Catalan cop jailed for tow truck revenge

A Barcelona policeman has been locked up for 18 months prison and slapped with a €400 penalty after he fined four tow trucks in "retaliation" after his own parked car was towed away.

Pussy Riot rocks Swedish political stage
Sweden

Pussy Riot rocks Swedish political stage

Two masked Pussy Riot members visited the Swedish political conference Almedalen on Monday, speaking with EU Affairs Minister Birgitta Ohlsson and hoping to discuss the plight of two colleagues still languishing in Russian jail.

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Switzerland

Swiss footballer Djourou confirmed for Hamburg

Bundesliga side Hamburg have taken Swiss international defender Johan Djourou on a season-long loan from English Premier League outfit Arsenal, the German club confirmed on Monday.

France set to reject Swiss-style euthanasia
France

France set to reject Swiss-style euthanasia

France's medical ethics advisory council has voted against the legalization of ‘active’ euthanasia, as found in Swiss clinics such as Dignitas, it was announced on Monday. French President François Hollande has promised a law on the issue by the end of 2013.

Police trip over pot on bishop’s plot
Spain

Police trip over pot on bishop’s plot

Spanish officers in Santa Cruz have arrested a man for growing a marijuana plantation on land belonging to the bishop of Tenerife.

Arrested cleric ‘strongly reaffirms his morality’
Italy

Arrested cleric ‘strongly reaffirms his morality’

A senior Catholic cleric arrested as part of a sweeping probe of the scandal-plagued Vatican bank rejected accusations of money-laundering and corruption on Monday, Italian media reported.

Letta discusses peace deal in Israel
Italy

Letta discusses peace deal in Israel

Prime Minister Enrico Letta has expressed hope that US-led peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians would be fruitful, while on a three-day visit to Israel.

Tour de France 2013: Gerrans wins Stage 3
France

Tour de France 2013: Gerrans wins Stage 3

Australia's Simon Gerrans of the Orica-GreenEdge team won the third stage of the Tour de France on Monday in a sprint finish at the end of the 145-kilometre ride from Ajaccio to Calvi on Corsica. The race now moves on to mainland France.

Energy law sees City of Light set for dark nights
France

Energy law sees City of Light set for dark nights

Paris, or the City of Light as it is known, will never again look the same at night after a new nationwide law comes into effect on Monday which forces shops and other buildings to switch off their lights every evening, in a bid to save energy.

Spaniards score high on job satisfaction
Spain

Spaniards score high on job satisfaction

Research has shown that Germans and Danes lead the European contentedness league while 81 percent of Spanish workers are still "happy" or "very happy" with life on the job.

New Swedish laws target sex videos and CCTV
Sweden

New Swedish laws target sex videos and CCTV

The slew of new laws that came into effect on Monday runs the gamut from outlawing sex-pest filming to the final nail in the coffin for Sweden's controversial transsexual sterilization law, a relic of the country's past eugenics programme.

Ten commandments for a Swedish internship
Sweden

Ten commandments for a Swedish internship

The internship looked amazing on paper, but in real life you drag your feet to the office every day... fret not, The Local has ten top tips for making sure you and your boss get the best out of your internship in Sweden.

Sweden second in global innovation index – again
Sweden

Sweden second in global innovation index – again

Sweden has been ranked as the second most innovative country in the world for the third time in a row, according to the 2013 Global Innovation Index.

Foreign mafia move in on Italy
Italy

Foreign mafia move in on Italy

The Georgian mafia is encroaching on Italian soil, posing a great threat to the country, Italian daily Il Fatto Quotidiano reported on Monday.

Study: Third of eligible Germans ‘shun benefits’
Germany

Study: Third of eligible Germans ‘shun benefits’

More than one in three Germans entitled to state benefits do not apply - saving the government billions - a new study showed. Shame and not knowing they are eligible are thought to be the most likely explanations.

Police smash Chinese sex slave rings in Madrid
Spain

Police smash Chinese sex slave rings in Madrid

Spanish police said on Monday they had busted two rival Chinese criminal networks that lured women and girls from China to Spain with the promise of high-paying jobs and then forced them into prostitution.

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Sweden

Uzbek couple freed over imam shooting

A man and woman in northern Sweden were cleared on Monday by the Court of Appeals over suspicions of being accessories to the attempted murder of exiled Uzbek regime-critic Obid Nazarov.

UN chief calls on missions to protect data
Switzerland

UN chief calls on missions to protect data

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday urged nations to protect the integrity of diplomatic missions on their soil amid allegations that Washington spied on the European Union and other allies.

‘You need patience and perseverance’
Italy

‘You need patience and perseverance’

Annie Ojile Nerone moved to Italy from Minnesota in 2005 and now runs a scooter tour business with her husband in Rome. She tells The Local why the city's hidden gems are best found on two wheels and why it's the best way to avoid traffic.

Take a Baù: Italian club’s players sport same name
Italy

Take a Baù: Italian club’s players sport same name

They've adopted the nicknames of players in Italy's premier league squads, from Supermario to Nocerino, but behind the disguise 23 footballers who play for Stoccareddo have the same surname: Baù.

Pakistan group targets gay marriage in Sweden
Sweden

Pakistan group targets gay marriage in Sweden

A petition has been placed filed with a court in Pakistan demanding that the government act against a Pakistani citizen who reportedly married his male partner in Sweden, according to a report in Pakistan's Express Tribune newspaper.

Switzerland tops global innovation index — again
Switzerland

Switzerland tops global innovation index — again

Switzerland remains the most innovative country on the planet for the third year in a row, according to a report issued on Monday by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

Two children dead in River Po tragedy
Italy

Two children dead in River Po tragedy

Two children have drowned after the two were swept away by the River Po in northern Italy on Sunday.

German MP: EU should shelter Snowden
Germany

German MP: EU should shelter Snowden

The European Union should offer safe haven to fugitive US leaker Edward Snowden, a leader of Germany's opposition Green party, former cabinet minister Jürgen Trittin, said Monday.

Italy reacts to US espionage claims
Italy

Italy reacts to US espionage claims

Italy's Foreign Minister Emma Bonino expressed confidence on Monday that the United States would provide the necessary details and assurances regarding reports of US spying on European institutions.

Fake cops steal €200,000 from Saudi official
France

Fake cops steal €200,000 from Saudi official

Audacious thieves in Paris impersonated police officers to rob a senior official from the Saudi Ministry of Youth and Sport shortly after his arrival in the French capital. The robbers made off with €200,000 in cash.

French model set for TV show à la Kardashian
France

French model set for TV show à la Kardashian

Nabilla Benattia, the French television personality and freelance model, is set to get her own TV reality show, inspired by her American idol, Kim Kardashian, according to reports on Monday.

Germany tells Croatia: welcome, now reform
Germany

Germany tells Croatia: welcome, now reform

Germany welcomed Croatia to the European Union on Monday, but said it expected the bloc's newest member to push forward quickly with reforms. The fight against corruption was, Chancellor Angela Merkel said, top of the agenda.

French ‘tantric sex guru’ on trial for rape of teen
France

French ‘tantric sex guru’ on trial for rape of teen

A French sect leader and ‘tantric sex guru’ is set to appear in court in Nantes on Monday, accused of raping a 14-year-old girl and a second woman. Gabriel Loison ran ‘new age’ courses in group sex for years until his arrest in 2011.

Slight summer dip in Norwegian house prices
Norway

Slight summer dip in Norwegian house prices

Norwegian house prices fell by 0.4 percent from May to June, but were still up by about 5.7 percent compared to the same period last year.

Why I chose to say goodbye to Sweden
Sweden

Why I chose to say goodbye to Sweden

In her last column for The Local, US-native Rebecca Ahlfeldt explains why she is saying goodbye to Sweden for San Francisco, and how having a bi-cultural family influenced The Decision.

Bid to cut world hunger in half ‘within reach’
Switzerland

Bid to cut world hunger in half ‘within reach’

Despite economic crises and dwindling aid, the UN says huge progress had been made towards meeting the so-called Millennium Development Goals, including its bid to slash world hunger in half between 1990 and 2015.

Calls grow for France to grant Snowden asylum
France

Calls grow for France to grant Snowden asylum

Political parties from across the divide in France demanded on Monday that Paris grant asylum to the fugitive former CIA operative Edward Snowden, as reward for his "courage" in blowing the lid off how the US had spied on French envoys in America.

Crochet hat kings weave massive profits
Germany

Crochet hat kings weave massive profits

Young people across Germany are embracing crocheting, thanks to two young men from Upper Franconia who have radically re-branded the craft. The revolution began online but has spread to schoolyards, train carriages and homes.

Norwegian race car driver injures 17 in Poland
Norway

Norwegian race car driver injures 17 in Poland

VIDEO - The driver of a Norwegian race car lost control of his vehicle on Sunday, plowing into the crowd at the Polonia Gran Turismo event in Poland and injuring a total of 17 spectators.

Swiss ‘bimbo’ to get French reality TV show
Switzerland

Swiss ‘bimbo’ to get French reality TV show

Nabilla Benattia, the Swiss television personality and freelance model in France, is set to get her own TV reality show, inspired by her American idol, Kim Kardashian, a French magazine is reporting.

Pope to pray for migrants in Lampedusa visit
Italy

Pope to pray for migrants in Lampedusa visit

Pope Francis will travel to the Italian island of Lampedusa next Monday, to pray for boat migrants who have died trying to make the crossing into Europe, the Vatican said in a statement on Monday.

‘We pay high taxes for our own safety’
Germany

‘We pay high taxes for our own safety’

In the latest instalment of My German Career, The Local spoke with Hannover-based software developer Krishna Edula.

Monday marks deadline for Spanish tax returns
Spain

Monday marks deadline for Spanish tax returns

Monday marks the final deadline for handing in Spanish tax returns, and failure to do so could result in extra charges.

Seven Swedes still in care after Turkey crash
Sweden

Seven Swedes still in care after Turkey crash

Seven Swedes remained in hospital in Turkey on Monday morning following the coach crash that claimed the lives of a Swedish teenager and a Dane.

Brits hit by freak summer snow in Norway
Norway

Brits hit by freak summer snow in Norway

A British couple holidaying in central Norway drove off the road over the weekend as a freak June snowfall rendered the roads near impassable in the Hardangervidda national park.

Sweden lags in Baltic Sea protection efforts
Sweden

Sweden lags in Baltic Sea protection efforts

Sweden is not meeting its targets for restoring the Baltic sea, and neither are any of the other eight countries bordering the sea, according to a report published on Monday by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Debt in Norway increases by 6.4 percent
Norway

Debt in Norway increases by 6.4 percent

Norwegian households and companies have gone 6.4 percent further into debt in the past year, with the business sector leading the way in increased borrowing.

French auto industry hit by plunge in sales
France

French auto industry hit by plunge in sales

There was more bad news for the ailing French automobile industry on Monday as new figures revealed that sales had tumbled in the first six months of the year. The Peugeot group has been the worst hit of the French car manufacturers.

Spain’s shops pin hopes on healthy summer sales
Spain

Spain’s shops pin hopes on healthy summer sales

Spain's summer sales, or 'rebajas', season starts on Monday in many parts of the country, with retailers saying the average spend per person will be a crisis-affected €50 ($65).

Norwegians held over Russia border dispute
Norway

Norwegians held over Russia border dispute

The Russian coast guard off Murmansk has detained a crew of five Norwegian fishermen, who claim they were west of the maritime border.

Italy’s unemployment highest since 1977
Italy

Italy’s unemployment highest since 1977

Unemployment in Italy hit 12.2 percent in May, statistics agency Istat announced on Monday, the highest level since 1977.

EU cap to crush mobile roaming costs
Germany

EU cap to crush mobile roaming costs

Happy holidays once again courtesy of the EU, as a new, lower cap on was slapped on the cost of Europe-wide roaming mobile calls and internet from Monday.

Germans shun laser surgery for specs
Germany

Germans shun laser surgery for specs

Glasses manufacturers are benefiting from an increasingly old and sightless Germany. They are, analysts said on Monday, unexpectedly batting off competition from laser eye surgeons as specs become trendy.

Hollande to US: Stop spying on us now
France

Hollande to US: Stop spying on us now

France reacted angrily to reports over the weekend that the US had spied on its embassy in Washington DC as well as EU diplomatic missions. President François Hollande has told the US to "immediately stop" spying on French envoys.

Norway rape victims ‘often near unconscious’
Norway

Norway rape victims ‘often near unconscious’

The average blood alcohol content of Norwegian rape victims renders them "near unconscious", according to a Trondheim doctor whose research found that eight out of ten rape victims in Norway had been drinking before the assault.

Sardinian family’s tip for a long life: minestrone
Italy

Sardinian family’s tip for a long life: minestrone

It's been a year since Consolata Melis, who turns 106 on August 22nd, and her eight brothers and sisters made it into the Guinness Book of Records as the world's oldest siblings, with a combined aged of 818.

Norway’s Aker moves deeper into UK market
Norway

Norway’s Aker moves deeper into UK market

Norwegian oil and gas technology company Aker Solutions has won a 2.7 billion kroner ($4.5 billion) contract to supply one of the biggest subsea projects underway in the United Kingdom, the company's most important foreign market.

Swiss mortgage rates move sharply higher
Switzerland

Swiss mortgage rates move sharply higher

Home buyers in Switzerland face a sudden recent increase in mortgage rates that signals the end of the low-interest era, according to a media report.

Spain gifts football kit to ailing Nelson Mandela
Spain

Spain gifts football kit to ailing Nelson Mandela

Confederations Cup finalists Spain and Brazil are gifting autographed commemorative shirts to ailing South African former president Nelson Mandela, FIFA president Sepp Blatter revealed recently.

Italy embroiled in Snowden spying claims
Italy

Italy embroiled in Snowden spying claims

Italy is one of 38 countries caught up in the latest US spying accusations attributed to fugitive intelligence analyst Edward Snowden, the Guardian newspaper reported on Monday.

Brilliant Brazil stuns Spain with 3–0 win
Spain

Brilliant Brazil stuns Spain with 3–0 win

Brazil destroyed world and European champions Spain 3-0 to win a third straight Confederations Cup title with a dazzling display of football which left the Maracana Stadium in raptures here on Sunday.

France adjusts consumer prices and benefits
France

France adjusts consumer prices and benefits

The second half of 2013 brings a raft of changes to French consumers and taxpayers on Monday. From VAT and mobile phone charges to tobacco and health insurance, The Local breaks down what’s up and what’s down in France, starting on July 1st.

Man dies in southern Sweden plane crash
Sweden

Man dies in southern Sweden plane crash

A man flying a small plane died on Sunday after attempting an emergency landing in southern Sweden when one of the aircraft's engines failed.

The Zollverein Coal Mine Industrial Complex
Germany

The Zollverein Coal Mine Industrial Complex

As part of our tour of Germany's UNESCO World Heritage sites, we check out the Zollverein mine in Essen, an industrial monument considered a leading example of the development of heavy industry in Europe.

Merkel to host youth unemployment talks
Germany

Merkel to host youth unemployment talks

Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday hosts EU talks on felling sky-high youth unemployment less than three months before German elections after coming under fire for championing austere spending cuts and helping to create a "lost generation".

Study: ‘War on gluten’ trend misdirected
Germany

Study: ‘War on gluten’ trend misdirected

“Gluten-free” may have become synonymous with choosing a healthy lifestyle, but research by scientists in Mainz suggested on Monday that shunning gluten may not be the answer.

Swedes survive New York helicopter drama
Sweden

Swedes survive New York helicopter drama

A Swedish family of four was lucky to escape uninjured when a helicopter was forced to land in the Hudson river in New York on Sunday after it ran out of power just minutes into a tourist flight.

Italy promises to restore Pompeii
Italy

Italy promises to restore Pompeii

Italy's culture minister assured UNESCO on Sunday that efforts were being made to restore the long-neglected Roman city of Pompeii, after the United Nations organization urged the country to speed up repairs.

Sweden’s Almedalen week kicks off in Gotland
Sweden

Sweden’s Almedalen week kicks off in Gotland

Sweden's biggest political event, Almedalen, began in Gotland on Sunday night, with Christian Democrat leader Göran Hagglund commencing proceedings by proposing a tax increase to improve daycare conditions.