Norway cuts Afghan aid in protest at graft
Norway

Norway cuts Afghan aid in protest at graft

Norway will cut its aid to Afghanistan in 2014 due to a lack of progress on women's rights and efforts to combat corruption, a senior Norwegian official said on Friday.

Stockholm hit by ‘angry animal’ protest
Sweden

Stockholm hit by ‘angry animal’ protest

A handful of observant Stockholmers found themselves owners of their own piece of original artwork on Friday thanks to one local artist's "angry animal" protest against an "overpriced and elitist" art world.

Pope tells couples not to go to bed angry
Italy

Pope tells couples not to go to bed angry

Pope Francis on Friday advised married couples not to go to bed angry "even if the plates fly" in a light-hearted address during a pilgrimage to the sites associated with St Francis of Assisi.

Shaken Spaniards talk down earthquake risk
Spain

Shaken Spaniards talk down earthquake risk

Spain's government said on Friday there is a limited risk of a big earthquake shaking the eastern coast after a string of small tremors linked to a vast offshore gas storage plant.

Stockholm sings in support of Russian gays
Sweden

Stockholm sings in support of Russian gays

One Swedish singer has decided that clicking "like" on a Facebook protest group against Russia's anti-gay policies wasn't enough and on Sunday his "Live and Let Love" project is set to raise the roof at Stockholm's Olympic Stadium.

French hunter kills son mistaking him for a boar
France

French hunter kills son mistaking him for a boar

A 61-year-old French hunter accidentally killed his own son in a tragic hunting accident this week after mistaking him for a wild boar. With a six-year-old boy also being killed in a separate hunt this week, there will be increased pressure for tougher safety measures to be introduced.

French mosque shooting leaves three wounded
France

French mosque shooting leaves three wounded

Three people were wounded in a shooting at a mosque in France on Friday. Initial reports say the three men, believed to be a father and his two sons, were shot at as they left Friday prayers at a mosque in Villers-le-Bel, north of Paris.

Italian senators propose Berlusconi expulsion
Italy

Italian senators propose Berlusconi expulsion

BREAKING NEWS: An Italian Senate committee on Friday proposed Silvio Berlusconi be expelled from parliament following his criminal conviction, dealing a further humiliating blow to the embattled billionaire. tycoon.

World records and gas blasts – the week in pics
Germany

World records and gas blasts – the week in pics

From world records, to gas explosions it was another eventful week for Germany. The Local takes a look back at the best photos from the last seven days.

Axe gang hits luxury watch store in Paris
France

Axe gang hits luxury watch store in Paris

About 15 men, some of them wielding axes and sledgehammers, burst into a luxury watch store in the heart of Paris in broad daylight on Friday and made off with a haul worth hundreds of thousands of euros.

Stockholm ‘pop-up’ diner shuts as secret divulged
Sweden

Stockholm ‘pop-up’ diner shuts as secret divulged

Stockholm's first "pop-up" restaurant, Dill, served its last supper on Thursday, after a dirty little secret was revealed earlier this week. The Local's Katie Dodd tasted the Michelin-inspired fare before the gig was up.

The enduring appeal of East Germany’s Trabi
Germany

The enduring appeal of East Germany’s Trabi

Thousands of Germans are still driving an East German "travelling cardboard box". More than two decades after the Berlin Wall fell, 32,500 Trabants, are on the country's roads. Alex Evans examines their enduring appeal.

‘Original of Spain’s best loved painting is in UK’
Spain

‘Original of Spain’s best loved painting is in UK’

A Spanish art expert claims Velazquez's first version of his iconic Las Meninas painting is not hanging in Madrid's Prado Museum but in a palace in Dorset, England.

‘Spain is reaping harvest of Catalanophobe PM’
Spain

‘Spain is reaping harvest of Catalanophobe PM’

The leader of Spain's opposition socialist PSOE party on Friday accused the country's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of washing his hands of the Catalonia 'problem'.

Apple drops trademark case against family café
Germany

Apple drops trademark case against family café

Electronics giant Apple has dropped its case against an independent café in west Germany in a row over using the fruit as a logo. It gave no reason for suddenly ending the pursuit of Bonn-based cafe Apfelkind.

Sarkozy’s ex-wife talks of regret, scolding Gaddafi
France

Sarkozy’s ex-wife talks of regret, scolding Gaddafi

She's been locked in a room with Libyan dictator Colonel Gaddafi, at whom she then proceeded to hurl abuse, and she has life-long regrets for deserting her former husband Nicolas Sarkozy in his hour of need. This week Cecilia Attias, our French Face of the Week, opened up about her "Desire for Truth".

Shock Bronze Age find ‘changes history’
Sweden

Shock Bronze Age find ‘changes history’

Archaeologists in northern Sweden have located the remains of a farm from the Bronze Age, a find which challenges the established history of the area around Umeå and the province of Norrland.

‘The food keeps you coming back for more’
Italy

‘The food keeps you coming back for more’

Sam Dunham chose Abruzzo to escape a frenetic London lifestyle. A decade on, the founder of the Life in Abruzzo guide tells The Local what she loves most about the central Italian region and reveals its best-kept secret…

Merkel and left-wing rival end first round of talks
Germany

Merkel and left-wing rival end first round of talks

UPDATE: Almost two weeks after winning the German elections, Chancellor Angela Merkel opened exploratory talks on Friday with her defeated centre-left rivals on whether they can jointly govern Europe's biggest economy.

Swedish crowds fall for footballer turned ‘Idol’
Sweden

Swedish crowds fall for footballer turned ‘Idol’

Football fans and music lovers alike have found a common idol of late in Kevin Walker, a half-Irish half-Swedish footballer turned singer who survived a near-fatal poisoning and now has women swooning and the television heads grinning.

The Swedish scientist behind the Nobel Prizes
Sweden

The Swedish scientist behind the Nobel Prizes

With the Nobel Prize announcements just around the corner, The Local finds out more about Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel and his controversial testament, which spawned the awards that have been handed to the world's finest minds since 1901.

Italian senators tipped to oust Berlusconi
Italy

Italian senators tipped to oust Berlusconi

An Italian Senate committee on Friday debated a motion to expel Silvio Berlusconi from parliament following his criminal conviction in a further humiliation for the embattled billionaire tycoon.

Ex-mobster accuses brother in Knox retrial
Italy

Ex-mobster accuses brother in Knox retrial

A transgender mafia turncoat on Friday accused her own brother in court of the grisly murder of British student Meredith Kercher in 2007 at the retrial of Amanda Knox and her Italian ex-lover.

Man killed by 5 tonnes of falling grapes
Spain

Man killed by 5 tonnes of falling grapes

A Spanish man was killed on Thursday when 5,000kg of grapes landed on top of him.

Schoolboy, 12, stabbed in chest during fight
Germany

Schoolboy, 12, stabbed in chest during fight

A schoolboy narrowly survived being stabbed in the chest, allegedly by a fellow 12-year-old pupil in a playground, police in North Rhine-Westphalia said on Friday.

Norway oil maverick jailed for five years
Norway

Norway oil maverick jailed for five years

Maverick Norwegian oil man Berge Gerdt Larsen has been sentenced to five years in prison for defrauding his own company, Larsen Oil and Gas, of 20.5 million kroner ($3.4m), and evading taxes.

EU-US deal would create ‘160,000 German jobs’
Germany

EU-US deal would create ‘160,000 German jobs’

A free trade agreement between the USA and European Union could create 160,000 jobs in Germany, a report claimed on Friday. Talks about a deal are set for Monday.

Syrian refugees at Calais demand asylum in UK
France

Syrian refugees at Calais demand asylum in UK

French officials on Friday offered temporary visas to a group of Syrian refugees, some of them on hunger strike, who have been camped out on a walkway at the ferry terminal in Calais for days. They have been demanding to join their families in the UK.

Swiss regulator probes ‘possible’ forex offences
Switzerland

Swiss regulator probes ‘possible’ forex offences

Switzerland’s financial regulator said on Friday it is investigating several unnamed Swiss financial institutions over “possible manipulation of foreign exchange markets”.

‘Sleepwalking’ man cleared of driving drunk
Sweden

‘Sleepwalking’ man cleared of driving drunk

A man stopped by police and found to be driving while heavily intoxicated has been cleared of drink driving by a Gothenburg appeals court as he was also fast asleep at the time.

Spaniard designs Messi football-shaped home
Spain

Spaniard designs Messi football-shaped home

A top Spanish architect has designed a house with football mad Leo Messi in mind — in the shape of a football.

‘I never use my second language at work’: Poll
Spain

‘I never use my second language at work’: Poll

Six out of ten Spaniards never actually get to try out the languages they are supposed to need in their job, a new study shows.

VIDEO: ‘Thieves use forks to fleece ATMs’
Italy

VIDEO: ‘Thieves use forks to fleece ATMs’

Five people have been arrested for using fork-like devices to steal money from cash machines in northern and central Italy in 35 separate incidents of alleged "reversal cash trapping".

Oktoberfest drinkers treated every 10 minutes
Germany

Oktoberfest drinkers treated every 10 minutes

Munich hospitals treat a drinker every 10 minutes during Oktoberfest. This time of year the city's accident and emergency departments become, for some, just another tent at the festival.

Italian ‘unspoiled paradise’ up for sale
Italy

Italian ‘unspoiled paradise’ up for sale

Just days after it was disclosed that a New Zealand businessman paid €2.94m for an Italian paradise isle, another of the country's gems is up for sale.

Velib’ vandals puncture Paris bike scheme
France

Velib’ vandals puncture Paris bike scheme

It emerged recently that Paris’s bike-share scheme Velib' is struggling to cope with record levels of vandalism and theft, which has left it a whopping 9,000 bikes down. The company that runs Velib' tells The Local that CCTV can help end the ‘unnacceptable’ vandalism.

Migration minister faces insider trading probe
Sweden

Migration minister faces insider trading probe

Sweden's Migration Minister Tobias Billström is to face an insider trading investigation over his purchase of shares in a troubled mining firm just days after the confirmation of a bailout.

Spaniard forces UK paper to drop ‘racist’ siesta pic
Spain

Spaniard forces UK paper to drop ‘racist’ siesta pic

A Spanish woman living in London has complained to the British broadsheet about their choice of image for their recent article "Time's up for siestas", arguing she was "fed up with their insulting racism" directed towards Spain.

Sex club hostage-taking ends without bloodshed
Switzerland

Sex club hostage-taking ends without bloodshed

A hostage-taking incident at a brothel in the canton of Graubünden ended without bloodshed early Thursday morning, cantonal police said.

French lesbian love story set to open amid feud
France

French lesbian love story set to open amid feud

A controversial lesbian love story that won the Palme d'Or at Cannes in May, opens next week amid a bitter feud between its two female leads and the director, who is accused of having "disrespected" them in 10 days of filming for a graphic 10-minute sex scene.

Spain grieves with Italy after Lampedusa tragedy
Spain

Spain grieves with Italy after Lampedusa tragedy

The Spanish Government has officially offered its condolences in the wake of a tragedy off the coast of the Italian Island of Lampedusa which led to the death of hundreds of would-be immigrants.

Berlin’s mayor to leave party leadership
Germany

Berlin’s mayor to leave party leadership

Berlin mayor and vice-president of the Social Democrats said on Friday he would not be running for leadership re-election citing "personal reasons". He claimed it had nothing to do with the party's poor general election outcome.

Italian ‘organ dealer’ lynched in Madagascar
Italy

Italian ‘organ dealer’ lynched in Madagascar

Rome confirmed on Friday that an Italian was lynched by an angry mob on a Madagascar tourist island which also killed a French citizen and a local man in a grisly rampage.

Russia halts adoptions to Sweden over gay nuptials
Sweden

Russia halts adoptions to Sweden over gay nuptials

Russia has stopped all adoptions to Swedish parents due to a court decision banning international adoptions to countries which afford homosexual couples equal marriage rights.

Leonardo da Vinci canvas ‘found’ in Swiss bank
Switzerland

Leonardo da Vinci canvas ‘found’ in Swiss bank

A new painting by Leonardo da Vinci of Renaissance noblewoman Isabella d'Este, which was stored in Switzerland, has been reliably authenticated with carbon dating, an Italian magazine reports.

New gov can slash taxes by 50 billion: Progress
Norway

New gov can slash taxes by 50 billion: Progress

The junior partner in Norway's incoming coalition is pushing for the incoming government to slash taxes by at least 50 billion kroner ($8bn), with inheritance tax scrapped and the threshold for income tax raised.

VIDEO: What Paris looks like without Parisians
France

VIDEO: What Paris looks like without Parisians

The words have been known to pass the lips of tourists, or even the French themselves, over the years: "I love Paris, but it would be better without Parisians." This video by two French film-makers depicts a post-apocalyptic City of Light, devoid of people - with eerie results.

Paris woman ‘proposed targets to Al-Qaeda’
France

Paris woman ‘proposed targets to Al-Qaeda’

A young Parisian woman was charged by anti-terrorist police in the French capital on Thursday for conspiracy to commit acts of terrorism. It is alleged she proposed sites in Paris to Al Qaeda over the internet that could be targeted in terrorist attacks.

New painting ‘proven to be Leonardo da Vinci’s’
Italy

New painting ‘proven to be Leonardo da Vinci’s’

An Italian weekly said in its Friday edition that a new painting by Leonardo da Vinci of Renaissance noblewoman Isabella d'Este has been reliably authenticated with carbon dating.

President: Germany must play greater global role
Germany

President: Germany must play greater global role

President Joachim Gauck said on Thursday Germany should take on more international responsibilities as it was not an island nation.

Islanders rushed to help drowning migrants
Italy

Islanders rushed to help drowning migrants

Locals on the tiny Italian island of Lampedusa fought back tears as they spoke of the desperate rush to haul dozens of drowning immigrants out of the sea as hundreds around them sank into the black waters.

Insider tips: Where to go in Leipzig?
Germany

Insider tips: Where to go in Leipzig?

Imagine yourself in the very centre of Leipzig on the viewing platform of the city’s tallest building, the MDR Tower. Over four kilometres to the southeast, the giant monument to the 1813 Battle of the Nations sticks out like an Aztec temple.

Le Classique: PSG and Marseille to renew rivalry
France

Le Classique: PSG and Marseille to renew rivalry

Champions PSG travel to Marseille this weekend, expecting a typically warm welcome from their bitter rivals at the Stade Velodrome. Monaco may be top of the table, but PSG v Marseille is still the biggest game of the season for the club from the capital.

Unusual bird box in Oslo’s Ekeberg Forest
Norway

Unusual bird box in Oslo’s Ekeberg Forest

A Norwegian gay health charity has nailed up bird boxes crammed with condoms on trees around Oslo's Ekeberg Forest, a popular locale for casual al-fresco gay sex.

St. Gallen loses hard-fought match at Swansea
Switzerland

St. Gallen loses hard-fought match at Swansea

St. Gallen came close but ultimately walked off the pitch 1-0 losers to Swansea, in a tough Europa League football match in the Welsh city on Thursday night.

Judge releases members of Eta-linked group
Spain

Judge releases members of Eta-linked group

Spain released on Thursday 14 members of Herrira, a support group aiding the armed Basque separatist group ETA, arrested in police raids earlier this week.

New Norway gov to allow Segways and boxing
Norway

New Norway gov to allow Segways and boxing

The leaders of the two parties forming Norway's new government have agreed to legalize use of the Segway, the two-wheeled self-balancing transporter, and to allow professional boxing.

Police find crocodile in Swede’s greenhouse
Sweden

Police find crocodile in Swede’s greenhouse

Police carrying out a raid in southern Sweden were surprised to discover a two-metre long crocodile living in a residential greenhouse in Malmö.

PHOTO ESSAY: An island adventure on two wheels
Sweden

PHOTO ESSAY: An island adventure on two wheels

As Sweden finds itself gripped in an autumn chill, contributor Joel Linde recalls a two-wheeled adventure undertaken in late summer that took him across Sweden's majestic Baltic island of Gotland.

Cinnamon Bun Day: What’s it all about?
Sweden

Cinnamon Bun Day: What’s it all about?

Swedes love their cinnamon buns so much they even gave the baked goods their own annual day - kanelbullens dag - offering sweet-toothed Swedes something special to celebrate. The Local finds out more.