Iran nuclear talks ‘could resume in Geneva’
Switzerland

Iran nuclear talks ‘could resume in Geneva’

Iran nuclear talks may resume in Geneva in October, the Swiss foreign minister said on Tuesday in an interview with Swiss public radio.

Swiss top global energy sustainability index
Switzerland

Swiss top global energy sustainability index

Switzerland topped a global ranking released on Tuesday of energy efficiency, access to resources and environmental sustainability.

Passengers forced to flee grounded tourist boat
Switzerland

Passengers forced to flee grounded tourist boat

An excursion boat ran aground on the River Aare in the canton of Solothurn on Tuesday forcing 148 passengers to board another vessel.

UBS employee ‘extorted’ via family hostage threat
Switzerland

UBS employee ‘extorted’ via family hostage threat

Crooks who claimed to be holding hostage the family of a man employed at a UBS branch in downtown Geneva on Tuesday demanded and obtained a reported ransom of one million francs from the bank employee.

Credit Suisse closing accounts in ’50 nations’
Switzerland

Credit Suisse closing accounts in ’50 nations’

Credit Suisse says it plans to close some clients' accounts as it focuses on high-value customers in some countries and pulls out of others altogether.

Ten things Spaniards hate about the English language
Spain

Ten things Spaniards hate about the English language

The spelling is ridiculous, the accents are impossible and then there are all those irregular plurals. Is it any wonder Spanish students learning English sometimes just want to give up?

Micro huts to house Swedish students
Sweden

Micro huts to house Swedish students

Compact and bijou wooden huts measuring just ten metres squared are set to grace the university town of Lund in southern Sweden in a move to help to ease a perennial housing shortage and cut housing costs.

Berlusconi’s fiancée eyed him up as a child
Italy

Berlusconi’s fiancée eyed him up as a child

The 28-year-old fiancée of Silvio Berlusconi, Francesca Pascale, was a child when she decided to chase after the billionaire, she said in a magazine interview.

Court: No payout for bird strike passengers
Germany

Court: No payout for bird strike passengers

Passengers will not be compensated by airlines for delays caused by bird strikes, Germany’s top court ruled on Tuesday.

Liberal collapse worrying for Brit Lib Dems too
Germany

Liberal collapse worrying for Brit Lib Dems too

Voters abandoned Germany's Liberal party in their droves on Sunday after the party spent four years in coalition with the Conservative CDU. The result should be a stark warning to Britain's Liberal Democrats, argues The Local's Tom Bristow.

GALLERY: France’s first ‘cat café’ opens in Paris
France

GALLERY: France’s first ‘cat café’ opens in Paris

Cat-lovers are flocking to one place only these days – the Café des Chats in Paris, where customers can stroke a kitty while sipping a cappuccino. Curiosity got the better of The Local, so we had a peek around, and brought a camera with us.

Police on Roma registry: ‘We’ve handled it badly’
Sweden

Police on Roma registry: ‘We’ve handled it badly’

The Swedish police have admitted that they "have badly handled" the situation regarding the existence of a registry of members of the Roma community, promising a full investigation into the matter.

Hollande seeks to remind US of France’s sway
France

Hollande seeks to remind US of France’s sway

The French President François Hollande headed to the UN in New York on Tuesday, where he will give his first major interview to an Anglo TV channel, when he answers questions for CNN. It has been seen as an attempt to reassert France’s position on the global scene.

‘Spain’s health cuts are hurting nation’s poorest’
Spain

‘Spain’s health cuts are hurting nation’s poorest’

Hospital budget cuts and new charges for medicine are blocking healthcare access to hundreds of thousands of people in Spain, including the seriously ill, a top health charity warned on Tuesday.

Gallery: The Local’s Property of the Week
Sweden

Gallery: The Local’s Property of the Week

This eight-room villa in Gothenburg might just be the Seventh Heaven of modern Scandinavian style. And it's on the market, complete with pool and ocean views. Take a look inside.

Volvo announces major restructuring plan
Sweden

Volvo announces major restructuring plan

Sweden's Volvo Group, the world's second biggest lorry manufacturer, announced Tuesday a 5 billion kronor ($780 million) restructuring plan over two years.

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Sweden

We come clean over article quote cock up

Much of the world seems to be under the impression that Sweden now allows public masturbation, likely due in part to a small but crucial error in a quote that appeared on The Local. Managing Editor James Savage sets the record straight.

Fury as France bans Sephora’s late hours
France

Fury as France bans Sephora’s late hours

French working culture was once again at the centre of debate this week after trade unions won a court battle to force cosmetics maker Sephora to close its flagship Paris store on the Champs-Elysées by 9pm, stopping staff from working longer hours for extra pay.

Madrid’s Atocha station to charge for toilet use
Spain

Madrid’s Atocha station to charge for toilet use

People wishing to use the toilets at Madrid's massive Atocha rail station will soon have to pay for the privilege, Spain's national rail infrastructure company announced on Tuesday.

Tour de France champ saved Jews in WWII
Italy

Tour de France champ saved Jews in WWII

The Israeli Holocaust museum, Yad Vashem, has honoured an Italian cyclist who risked his life to save Jews during the Second World War.

Taxi driver molests US tourist at Oktoberfest
Germany

Taxi driver molests US tourist at Oktoberfest

A Munich taxi driver molested an American tourist on Sunday night, as she travelled back to her hotel after a day's drinking at Oktoberfest.

Sailor: Navy ‘mongs’ mutiny was all a joke
Germany

Sailor: Navy ‘mongs’ mutiny was all a joke

The trial of six German naval sailors accused of mutiny by writing racist slurs on a superior officers legs after tying him to a table opened on Tuesday with a confession - it had all been a revenge prank.

‘Galácticos like Bale were cheap’: Real president
Spain

‘Galácticos like Bale were cheap’: Real president

Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez has defended his policy of signing the best players in the world for huge transfer fees by claiming they make the club money in the long run.

Swedish TV star in ivory trade scandal
Sweden

Swedish TV star in ivory trade scandal

A well-established Swedish auction house owned by Sweden's Antiques Roadshow expert Knut Knutson is being investigated for trading illegal ivory.

Alcoa eyes sell-off of Spanish production sites
Spain

Alcoa eyes sell-off of Spanish production sites

US aluminium giant Alcoa is looking at selling two production sites in Spain and its sole plant in France, the head of the French facility said on Monday.

Brothels are Madrid’s new nightclubs: survey
Spain

Brothels are Madrid’s new nightclubs: survey

More and more mixed groups of 16 to 24-year-old guys and girls in Spain's capital are swapping discos for brothels, a new study shows.

Arnie’s Madrid fight club KOs safety concerns
Spain

Arnie’s Madrid fight club KOs safety concerns

A Madrid martial arts extravaganza featuring Austrian movie star and bodybuilding legend Arnold Schwarzenegger is under fire with Spain's sports authorities saying organizers haven't meet minimum safety requirements.

Doctor charged over child sex abuse
Sweden

Doctor charged over child sex abuse

A doctor in Stockholm appeared in court on Tuesday to face charges that he sexually abused two boys and filmed the assaults which he has argued were medical examinations.

Court backs Sarkozy corruption charges
France

Court backs Sarkozy corruption charges

A French appeal court on Tuesday threw out a bid by former president Nicolas Sarkozy to have corruption charges linked to his 2007 election campaign dropped.

Nokas millions used for drugs smuggling
Norway

Nokas millions used for drugs smuggling

The proceeds of Norway's largest ever bank heist have been used to finance an enormous drugs smuggling network, the country's police now believe.

Game officials tackle deer-devouring dogs
Switzerland

Game officials tackle deer-devouring dogs

Authorities in the canton of Saint Gallen are planning to install surveillance cameras in the woods in a bid to capture stray dogs that are killing — and eating — deer and sheep.

75 Syrian refugees disappear from shelter
Germany

75 Syrian refugees disappear from shelter

A group of 75 Syrian refugees have disappeared from their emergency accommodation, days after German authorities caught them trying to cross into Denmark.

Daughter of Berlusconi’s ex-staff in mafia probe
Italy

Daughter of Berlusconi’s ex-staff in mafia probe

The daughter and son-in-law of a mafia boss who was once Silvio Berlusconi's stable keeper have been arrested in Milan.

Four killed as private plane crashes near Lyon
France

Four killed as private plane crashes near Lyon

A private plane crashed near Lyon on Tuesday, killing all four people on board. The aircraft burst into flames when it crashed into a field shortly after take off from an aerodrome near the city in central France.

Search begins for ship wreck’s missing bodies
Italy

Search begins for ship wreck’s missing bodies

The search for two bodies still missing 20 months after Italy's Costa Concordia cruise ship tragedy began on Tuesday off the island of Giglio, Italy's civil protection agency said.

Telco deal ‘another hard blow’ for Italy – union
Italy

Telco deal ‘another hard blow’ for Italy – union

Spain's Telefonica has reached a deal to raise its stake in the shareholding pact that controls Telecom Italia, increasing its grip on the beleaguered Italian phone company.

Telefonica tightens grip on Telecom Italia
Spain

Telefonica tightens grip on Telecom Italia

Spain's Telefonica has reached a deal to raise its stake in the shareholding pact that controls Telecom Italia, increasing its hold on the beleaguered Italian phone company.

World’s best disco dancer is Norwegian
Norway

World’s best disco dancer is Norwegian

A Norwegian man has been crowned the world's best disco dancer at the Disco Freestyle World Championship in Germany.

Prices plunge in season’s first lobster haul
Sweden

Prices plunge in season’s first lobster haul

Sweden's first lobster haul snapped up 28,000 kronor ($4,300) per kilogramme at auction on Tuesday, a drastic drop from the first catch of last season which pulled in a record 102,000 kronor.

Gold worth €1.5m ‘stolen’ from Air France flight
France

Gold worth €1.5m ‘stolen’ from Air France flight

Some 44 kilos of gold bars, worth €1.5 million, are believed to have been stolen from a recent Air France flight from Paris to Zurich. The theft comes as suspicions mount that Air France staff were complicit in a recent €200 million cocaine smuggling operation.

Economic recovery is in sight – Napolitano
Italy

Economic recovery is in sight – Napolitano

Italy's president Giorgio Napolitano said the country is slowly recovering from its longest ever recession, Italian media reported.

Top Swiss banks sued in US for ‘Libor rate rigging’
Switzerland

Top Swiss banks sued in US for ‘Libor rate rigging’

America's credit union regulator has filed an anti-trust lawsuit against UBS, Credit Suisse and 11 other international banks as part of the global crackdown in the Libor rate-rigging scandal.

‘A bailout in 2014 is unlikely’: Spanish PM
Spain

‘A bailout in 2014 is unlikely’: Spanish PM

"Spain is out of the recession but not the crisis," Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told US newspaper The Wall Street Journal on Monday in an hour-long interview about the state of the country's economy.

Three-metre shark found on French beach (gallery)
France

Three-metre shark found on French beach (gallery)

Seaweed yes, even jellyfish, but a three-metre shark is not what you’d expect to find washed up on a beach in Brittany, west France. But we might have to get used to it because sharks could become a more common sight off the coast of north-western France in the future.

Queen Sonja opens Scottish cancer centre
Norway

Queen Sonja opens Scottish cancer centre

Norway's Queen Sonja yesterday was in Scotland on Monday to open a new, architecturally inspiring, Norway-designed cancer centre.

Former minister’s salary paid with aid money
Sweden

Former minister’s salary paid with aid money

Former minister Gunilla Carlsson, who resigned last week, had her monthly salary of 121,000 kronor ($19,000) paid for the last four years with money which was supposed to be spent on aid.

Pupil found hanged after being sent out of class
France

Pupil found hanged after being sent out of class

A schoolteacher went on trial in southern France on Tuesday, charged with manslaughter over an incident where one of her pupils, aged 11, was found hanged in the corridor, after she called him “useless” and sent him out of the classroom.

‘This is the perfect time to teach English in Spain’
Spain

‘This is the perfect time to teach English in Spain’

In this week's edition of My Spanish Career, The Local talks to Madrid-based English teacher Lena Williams about what qualifications you need, the positives and negatives of teaching in Spain and why the crisis means English teachers are more in demand than ever.

Five ministers resign in Liberal party meltdown
Germany

Five ministers resign in Liberal party meltdown

The FDP meltdown continued late on Monday as the entire party leadership announced they would step down following Sunday's historic defeat. Five outgoing cabinet ministers, including Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle fell on their swords.

Fifty kilos of gold stolen from Zurich-bound  plane
Switzerland

Fifty kilos of gold stolen from Zurich-bound plane

An investigation is continuing into the mysterious theft of 50 kilograms of gold bound for Zurich on a plane from Paris.

Nightclub invites guests to ‘catch a dwarf’
Germany

Nightclub invites guests to ‘catch a dwarf’

A nightclub in northern Germany controversially held a “Lilliputian Action” evening, in which guests were invited to catch a dwarf hired to run around the dance floor.

Puglia’s great grape robbers arrested
Italy

Puglia’s great grape robbers arrested

In a bid to get their hands on the prized grapes used to produce Sangiovese, one of Italy’s most famous red wines, a trio of robbers from Puglia stole 25 tonnes of grapes from a vineyard in Bitonto, near Bari.

More action needed to end child labour: ILO
Switzerland

More action needed to end child labour: ILO

The number of child labourers worldwide has dropped by a third since 2000, the Geneva-based International Labour Organization (ILO) said on Monday, but it warned that progress was not being made fast enough.

Spanish judge throws out Cuba ‘murder’ case
Spain

Spanish judge throws out Cuba ‘murder’ case

Spain's top criminal court on Monday dismissed a lawsuit by the family of late Cuban dissident Oswaldo Paya which accused Cuban secret service agents of involvement in his death.

Fernando Alonso puts brakes on cycling dream
Spain

Fernando Alonso puts brakes on cycling dream

The deal for Spanish two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso to rescue the financially stricken Euskaltel Euskadi cycling team has collapsed, both parties confirmed on Monday.

Norway Muslims face mosque-burning threat
Norway

Norway Muslims face mosque-burning threat

An anonymous group has threatened to unleash a campaign of mosque burnings across Norway, in an email sent last week to the World Islamic Mission Mosque.

Sikhs want freedom from France’s secular laws
France

Sikhs want freedom from France’s secular laws

France's Sikh community is ramping up a campaign for the turban to be allowed in state-funded schools amid moves to reinforce a 2004 law banning pupils from wearing religious symbols.

Spanish journalist taken hostage in Syria
Spain

Spanish journalist taken hostage in Syria

A special correspondent in Syria for the Spanish newspaper El Periodico has been kidnapped in the war-torn country, the paper announced late on Monday in its online edition.

Sarkozy set to be focus of new book by ex-wife
France

Sarkozy set to be focus of new book by ex-wife

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy's ex-wife Cecilia Attias, who was a key advisor in his victorious 2007 campaign but divorced him soon after, will publish a highly-awaited autobiography next month, her editor said this week.

Germany’s first black MPs enter Bundestag
Germany

Germany’s first black MPs enter Bundestag

Germany's first two lawmakers of African origin cheered their victory as trailblazers on Monday after winning seats in parliament in Sunday's elections.

Police kept second illegal registry of Roma
Sweden

Police kept second illegal registry of Roma

A second registry with details about members of the Roma community has been kept by police in southern Sweden, news that comes just one day after the first police registry containing over 4,000 names was uncovered.

‘Sweden’s integration debate skewed by political correctness’
Sweden

‘Sweden’s integration debate skewed by political correctness’

The fear of being labelled "politically incorrect" keeps Sweden's main political parties from engaging in an honest debate about integration, and plays into the hands of the far-right, anti-immigration Sweden Democrats, argues contributor Ruben Brunsveld.

Attacks against black minister spark EU pact
Italy

Attacks against black minister spark EU pact

Top officials from 17 European nations signed a declaration on Monday against racism, showing support for Italy's first black minister Cécile Kyenge, the victim of a slurry of racist attacks.

German hackers crack iPhone security system
Germany

German hackers crack iPhone security system

German hackers said on Monday they have been able to get past the new biometric identification system contained in the latest generation of Apple's iconic iPhones.

Court rejects Brit bishop Holocaust denial appeal
Germany

Court rejects Brit bishop Holocaust denial appeal

A German court on Monday threw out an appeal by a British bishop convicted in a high-profile case for denying key facts about the Holocaust.

Ai Weiwei to judge Stockholm Film Festival
Sweden

Ai Weiwei to judge Stockholm Film Festival

Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei was on Monday appointed to be on the jury of the Stockholm Film Festival even though he was unlikely to be allowed to attend in person, festival organisers said.