Switzerland Tourism targets Chinese for skiing
Switzerland

Switzerland Tourism targets Chinese for skiing

Winter in Europe wouldn't be winter without a bit of skiing, and this year Switzerland has its sights set on attracting a whole new group of amateur skiers to its slopes — the Chinese.

Swiss hospital germs cause ‘scores of deaths’
Switzerland

Swiss hospital germs cause ‘scores of deaths’

Every year 600 deaths and 15,000 infections could be avoided in Swiss hospital operating rooms through better hygiene standards, says Swissnoso, an organization dedicated to reducing hospital-borne disease.

Angry Spain: ‘US phone taps unacceptable’
Spain

Angry Spain: ‘US phone taps unacceptable’

Spain has denounced newly reported mass US eavesdropping on its citizens' telephone calls, calling it "inappropriate and unacceptable" as outrage spread over the worldwide espionage programme.

‘Spain has turned a corner’: Eurogroup chief
Spain

‘Spain has turned a corner’: Eurogroup chief

Spain is on the path to recovery after a two year battle against recession but it must strengthen labour market reforms, Eurogroup president Jeroen Dijsselbloem said on Monday.

Teachers bully Down’s boy – parents charged
Spain

Teachers bully Down’s boy – parents charged

The parents of a Spanish Down's syndrome boy who was bullied by his teachers have been accused of neglect for taking his education into their own hands.

Norwegian firm signs US nano-helicopter deal
Norway

Norwegian firm signs US nano-helicopter deal

A Norwegian company has been awarded a contract to develop its revolutionary pocket-sized micro-drone for the US military, a US defence industry magazine has reported.

French drinkers develop taste for greener wine
France

French drinkers develop taste for greener wine

France's much cherished wine industry is often accused of being behind the times or slow to adapt but recent surveys suggest times indeed are changing with more and more vineyards opting to produce organically made tipple.

‘We can’t pay the rent,’ plead French police
France

‘We can’t pay the rent,’ plead French police

The head of France’s Gendarmerie Nationale has made an extraordinary personal plea for funding in the National Assembly, telling MPs his branch of the French police can no longer pay their rent or improve their fleet of vehicles, it was reported this week.

‘You need Italian friends to get things done’
Italy

‘You need Italian friends to get things done’

With the job market in Italy being tough, one of the only ways for a foreigner to make a living is by going it alone. David Brenner, a former BBC sports presenter, talks us through the process of setting up his holiday rental business, VillasFor2, in Abruzzo.

More young Italians create their own jobs
Italy

More young Italians create their own jobs

More enterprising young people are choosing to set up their own businesses in Italy, a report has revealed, with data showing that 33 percent of businesses started in the last nine months were founded by people under the age of 35.

E-cig adverts at stake in landmark French case
France

E-cig adverts at stake in landmark French case

A tobacco-seller in south-western France took a rival electronic cigarette vendor to court on Monday, in a landmark case which could ultimately put an end to the "unfair edge" e-cigarettes get from being legally allowed to advertise freely, while their conventional competitors cannot.

Swede’s ‘Titanic’ potato mashes size record
Sweden

Swede’s ‘Titanic’ potato mashes size record

You'd have a job getting through this one for lunch. The largest potato believed to ever have been found in Sweden, weighing in at almost two kilos, is so big it brought a machine to a halt when it was discovered.

Students reported after teachers’ coffee poisoned
Sweden

Students reported after teachers’ coffee poisoned

Students at a school in central Sweden have been reported to the police for three separate incidents this month, one of which included the suspected poisoning of a teacher's coffee.

‘French kids’ discipline not down to spanking’
France

‘French kids’ discipline not down to spanking’

The report of a French father being fined for spanking his child, despite the act not being illegal, caused a stir in France this month and raised questions about the differences in parenting styles between France and Anglo countries. Guest blogger Cordelia Newlin de Rojas looks at the issue.

Six miners killed by gas leak in northern Spain
Spain

Six miners killed by gas leak in northern Spain

A gas leak at a coal mine in northwestern Spain killed six people on Monday, an emergency services spokeswoman said.

‘St. Jude’ storm hits Germany, kills four
Germany

‘St. Jude’ storm hits Germany, kills four

UPDATE: The violent “St. Jude” storm that hit the UK on Sunday night reached Germany on Monday, killing a mother and child. Strong winds and heavy rain battered northern parts of the country grounding flights and halting trains.

Over a million Italians earn a living from politics
Italy

Over a million Italians earn a living from politics

Over a million people in Italy make their living from politics, making it the biggest industry in the country, according to a report by the Italian labour union, UiL.

Swedes told to stay home as monster storm nears
Sweden

Swedes told to stay home as monster storm nears

Gothenburg residents are taking shelter and authorities have closed down trains in Skåne as Sweden braces for a hurricane-like storm that has already left a trail of destruction across the UK and France.

Spain demands details of mass US eavesdropping
Spain

Spain demands details of mass US eavesdropping

Spain demanded on Monday details of reported mass US eavesdropping on its citizens, denouncing the alleged surveillance as "inappropriate and unacceptable" as outrage spread over the worldwide espionage programme.

Germans want to interrogate Snowden
Germany

Germans want to interrogate Snowden

German politicians said on Monday they wanted to call whistleblower Edward Snowden as a witness in a parliamentary investigation into US spying - and possibly grant him asylum at the same time.

Fake ‘dentist’ prosecuted for botched surgeries
Sweden

Fake ‘dentist’ prosecuted for botched surgeries

A 67-year-old man who claimed to be a dentist has been prosecuted for a series of botched surgeries which left his patients in pain and out of pocket.

Swiss weigh slashing top pay in landmark vote
Switzerland

Swiss weigh slashing top pay in landmark vote



In Winterthur, a former industrial town in the north of Switzerland, red and white banners are popping up outside houses and apartments — but they are not national flags.

Head of Progress’s anti-immigration wing resigns
Norway

Head of Progress’s anti-immigration wing resigns

Per Sandberg, one of Norway's leading anti-immigration figures, has announced he is retiring as deputy leader of the Progress Party, claiming he can no longer find the motivation to do his job.

Mix-up lands Spain-bound gran in Caribbean
Spain

Mix-up lands Spain-bound gran in Caribbean

62-year-old British woman Lamenda Kingdon had been longing to visit the Alhambra in the Andalusian city of Granada. Little did she know she was booked on a flight to the Caribbean island of Grenada.

Furious Paris commuters take to the tracks
France

Furious Paris commuters take to the tracks

Paris commuters on the notorious RER B line that serves Charles de Gaulle airport finally cracked after a long delay on Monday morning, when they descended from the train and walked down the tracks in defiance. SNCF were forced to halt all traffic on the line.

Football chiefs dismiss ‘ghost goal’ case
Germany

Football chiefs dismiss ‘ghost goal’ case

The German Football Association rejected a complaint from Hoffenheim on Monday about a "ghost goal" scored in the Bundesliga a week ago. The referee allowed a header to stand despite the ball slipping in through a hole in the net.

Transsexual asks Church to approve marriage
Italy

Transsexual asks Church to approve marriage

A woman who was born a man and her husband have written to an Italian cardinal to ask the Catholic Church to officially recognize their marriage, four years after they were controversially wedded in a church in Piagge in the central Marche region.

Rescued Spanish Bankia on the mend: report
Spain

Rescued Spanish Bankia on the mend: report

Spanish bank Bankia, nationalised and rescued with European Union help in December, reported on Monday a switch into small profit from huge losses in the third quarter.

Foreign-born workers miss out on pensions
Sweden

Foreign-born workers miss out on pensions

Hundreds of thousands of foreign-born residents in Sweden have the right to a pension, but don't know it. A new campaign by the Swedish Pensions Agency (Pensionsmyndigheten) aims to change that with advertisements in eight minority languages.

Norway study may answer cot-death riddle
Norway

Norway study may answer cot-death riddle

A team of Norwegian researchers believes may be on the way to solving the riddle of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (Sids) or 'cot-death', opening the way to screening and even treatment.

Xstrata Glencore buys into Aussie coal mine
Switzerland

Xstrata Glencore buys into Aussie coal mine

Resources giant Rio Tinto announced on Monday the US$1.02 billion sale of its stake in Australia's Clermont thermal coal mine to Swiss and Japanese interests as it seeks to shore up its ailing bottom line.

Malmö mayor: ‘Nobody should hide who they are’
Sweden

Malmö mayor: ‘Nobody should hide who they are’

A fortnight has passed since The Local published ‘Fear and giggles: A day as a Jew in Malmö.’ Since then the story has been picked up by media around the world but what has the reaction been in Malmö itself? Patrick Reilly spoke to the city’s new mayor amongst others to find out.

‘It’s easier to be sacked here than you think’
Germany

‘It’s easier to be sacked here than you think’

In this week's Job Talk, The Local finds out how hard it is to get sacked in Germany and looks at just how you can, and cannot, be dismissed from your job.

Villa double helps Atlético close in on Barça
Spain

Villa double helps Atlético close in on Barça

David Villa ended his seven-game scoring drought with a double as Atlético Madrid closed to within a point of Barcelona at the top of La Liga with a 5-0 win over Real Betis.

Business confidence dips in Italy as recovery drags
Italy

Business confidence dips in Italy as recovery drags

Business confidence fell in Italy in October after rising for three months running, mainly due to poor results for retail and market services, the official data agency Istat said on Monday.

Cops ‘closer to solving’ Malmö hate crime case
Sweden

Cops ‘closer to solving’ Malmö hate crime case

Police in Malmö are confident they are getting closer to finding the culprits who assaulted a Gambian native and his 18-month old son in a hate crime attack last month.

Rail strikes to limit Spain’s train services
Spain

Rail strikes to limit Spain’s train services

Spain's national rail company Renfe on Monday began protest action which bring down the number of train services on the country's trains over the next two months.

Lou Reed’s dark, drug-fuelled Berlin
Germany

Lou Reed’s dark, drug-fuelled Berlin

The US rock legend Lou Reed died on Sunday at the age of 71. The influential musician had a complicated relationship with Germany.

Baby ‘forced to live in car boot’ in France
France

Baby ‘forced to live in car boot’ in France

Mechanics carrying out repairs on a car in south-western France over the weekend made the appalling discovery of a naked, dehydrated baby girl in the car boot. There has been widespread shock in France as details emerge about the baby’s horrific existence, which “defies belief".

Alleged boat ‘killer’ declines to testify
Switzerland

Alleged boat ‘killer’ declines to testify

A 77-year-old man accused of killing a woman by negligence while operating a motorboat on Lake Biel in the canton of Bern more than three years ago declined to testify before a regional court hearing the case on Monday.

NSA ‘spied on 46m calls in Italy’
Italy

NSA ‘spied on 46m calls in Italy’

NSA, the US intelligence agency, tapped 46 million phone calls in Italy, according to a report on Cryptome, a Wikileaks-style website that provides information on spying and surveillance.

Activists clash with riot police at French bullfight
France

Activists clash with riot police at French bullfight

Riot police were forced to intervene to keep the peace in a French village on Sunday after animal rights campaigners tried to prevent a bullfight from taking place. Similar protests two years had descended into violence when demonstrators were attacked by spectators.

Man plunges to death after homophobia claims
Italy

Man plunges to death after homophobia claims

A 21-year-old man plunged 11 floors to his death in Rome over the weekend after leaving a note in which he complained of homophobia. It is the third suspected homophobia-related suicide in Italy in the past year.

US tracked 60 million Spanish phone calls
Spain

US tracked 60 million Spanish phone calls

US security services tracked 60.5 million telephone calls in Spain in a single month, according to a leaked document published on Monday in a leading Spanish newspaper.

JOBTALK Seven reasons Swedes should employ immigrants
Sweden

JOBTALK Seven reasons Swedes should employ immigrants

Foreign-born and second generation job seekers in Sweden often feel they're facing headwind, or a proper hurricane. White-collar trade union TCO, however, thinks the real losers are biased Swedish employers who risk recruiting the wrong person.

Villagers kill marten after attack spree
Germany

Villagers kill marten after attack spree

A aggressive marten attacked several people in a village in western Germany on Saturday. It injured one victim badly enough to put them in hospital, before a shopkeeper managed to kill it with a broom.

Swedish police catch thief using snowprints
Sweden

Swedish police catch thief using snowprints

Police in northern Sweden managed to track down a thief who broke into a psychiatric ward by retracing the burglar's steps back to his apartment using the footprints he left in the snow.

Pensioner’s lost €175,000 returned in full
Italy

Pensioner’s lost €175,000 returned in full

A pensioner who lost an envelope stuffed with €175,000 after it was blown off the balcony of her home in Cassino, Lazio, has had the money returned to her without a euro missing, although she did have to give away 10 percent thanks to Italy's "honesty" law.

Thieves ‘steal and rape dog’ in Berlin
Germany

Thieves ‘steal and rape dog’ in Berlin

A Berlin woman was reunited with her stolen dog on Sunday only to discover that it had likely been sexually assaulted. There may be more than one attacker, vets said.

‘Friends should not monitor eachother’: PM
Norway

‘Friends should not monitor eachother’: PM

Norway's Prime Minister is demanding that the US provide a report on the extent to which Norwegians have been targeted by the National Security Agency's spying programmes, after declaring that "allies and friends should not monitor one another".

French government under fire over tax plans
France

French government under fire over tax plans

The French government came under fire from all sides over its attempts to hike taxes, with the ruling Socialists forced to back down on one tax plan on Sunday, just a day after it faced violent protests over a controversial new "ecotax" on heavy goods vehicles.

Far right struggles to get foothold in Spain
Spain

Far right struggles to get foothold in Spain

The far right is shaking up political systems across Europe. But despite economic crisis and regional separatism, extremist parties are so far failing to find favour in Spain.

PSG salvage late draw to stay top of Ligue 1
France

PSG salvage late draw to stay top of Ligue 1

PSG had to rely on a last-minute equaliser against Saint-Etienne on Sunday to safeguard their unbeaten record in Ligue 1 and keep them top of the table alongside Monaco, who overcame Lyon 2-1 earlier in the day. Click here for a round-up of all the action.

Father of teen jihadis hires Breivik lawyer
Norway

Father of teen jihadis hires Breivik lawyer

The father of two teenaged Norwegian sisters who have run away to Syria to help in the country's civil war has hired Geir Lippestad, the lawyer who represented far-right terrorist Anders Breivik, to bring his daughters home.

Storm leaves 75,000 homes without power
France

Storm leaves 75,000 homes without power

UPDATED: Reports indicate a woman died on Monday after being swept away by a wave off the coast of Brittany, amid a fierce storm which left around 75,000 households in northwest France without power and disrupted travel across the English Channel.

Aung San Suu Kyi collects Rome citizenship
Italy

Aung San Suu Kyi collects Rome citizenship

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi finally became an honorary citizen of Rome on Sunday, 19 years after the honour was awarded to her.

German warning triggers Israel UN meet
Germany

German warning triggers Israel UN meet

Israel will attend a UN human rights review on Tuesday a top official said, after Germany warned of a diplomatic backlash if it stayed away.

Is child-centred Sweden ruled by bratty kids?
Sweden

Is child-centred Sweden ruled by bratty kids?

As the first country to outlaw hitting children to discipline them, Sweden has long been considered as a role model for good parenting, but some now wonder if children wield too much power, the AFPs Tom Sullivan discovers.

White House ‘ended NSA Merkel phone tapping’
Germany

White House ‘ended NSA Merkel phone tapping’

The United States flatly denied on Sunday that President Barack Obama had been informed years ago that US spy agencies were monitoring German Chancellor Angela Merkel's phone calls.

Dutch tomatoes leave Swedish farms in the red
Sweden

Dutch tomatoes leave Swedish farms in the red

Stiff competition from cheap imported tomatoes could bury a quarter of Swedish tomato farmers in bankruptcy in what observers are calling one of the worst years ever for the country's domestic tomato production.

Fourth F1 victory sparks party in ‘Vettelheim’
Germany

Fourth F1 victory sparks party in ‘Vettelheim’

Thousands of people began to party in Formula One great Sebastian Vettel's hometown of Heppenheim after the German was crowned world champion for a fourth successive year following his victory in Sunday's Indian Grand Prix.

Warnings as ‘St. Jude’ storm threatens Sweden
Sweden

Warnings as ‘St. Jude’ storm threatens Sweden

A storm carrying hurricane-force winds, dubbed "St. Jude" by media in the UK as it batters Britain, is expected to slam into Sweden on Monday afternoon, prompting a slew of warnings.