EU agrees to resume talks with Swiss
Switzerland

EU agrees to resume talks with Swiss

The European Union agreed Tuesday to resume talks with Switzerland on setting an overall framework for their relationship, frozen since a controversial Swiss vote calling for curbs on immigration.

Eurovision winner backs Norway’s Carl Espen
Norway

Eurovision winner backs Norway’s Carl Espen

Last year's Eurovision winner, Emmelie De Forest, has declared her support for Norway's entry Carl Espen in this year's contest.

Swiss sign on to OECD tax evasion measure
Switzerland

Swiss sign on to OECD tax evasion measure

Switzerland was among 47 countries that signed up on Tuesday to automatically share bank account data, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) said, in what has been touted as a major step towards cracking down on global tax evasion.

Federer’s wife gives birth to twins for second time
Switzerland

Federer’s wife gives birth to twins for second time

Swiss tennis legend Roger Federer is skipping the Madrid Masters tournament to be at the side of his wife, who on Tuesday night delivered twin boys, the star said on his Facebook page.

France bans breast implants from new firm
France

France bans breast implants from new firm

France, still shaken from a faulty breast implant scandal that saw thousands of women suffering ruptures, has banned implants made by a South Korean company after the firm’s products failed to meet safety standards.

Tens of thousands claim medical mistreatment
Germany

Tens of thousands claim medical mistreatment

More than 26,000 patients lodged official complaints about treatment in hospitals and doctor's surgeries in 2013, with most complaints from patients coming in the aftermath of surgery.

Fiat Chrysler plans Alfa Romeo relaunch
Italy

Fiat Chrysler plans Alfa Romeo relaunch

Italian auto giant Fiat Chrysler announced on Tuesday that it will invest around $7 billion through 2018 to relaunch the high-end and sporty Alfa Romeo line with eight new models expected.

‘Dirty’ cops summoned over Chinese mafia gifts
Spain

‘Dirty’ cops summoned over Chinese mafia gifts

Two police officers accused of accepting gifts including legs of ham and tickets to bullfights in exchange for doing favours for a high-profile Spain-based Chinese criminal gang have denied any wrongdoing.

Editors at Le Monde newspaper quit en masse
France

Editors at Le Monde newspaper quit en masse

A majority of chief editors at French daily Le Monde resigned from their posts on Tuesday amid a conflict with management over editorial reforms. The mass resignation comes while staff at another French newspaper are in uproar over plans to turn into a "social network".

Borg shares Pfizer concerns with Osborne
Sweden

Borg shares Pfizer concerns with Osborne

Sweden's finance minister has recalled that Pfizer's old promise to keep Pharmacia in Sweden fell flat, which makes him worried as the US drugs giant moves in on Anglo-Swedish pharmaceuticals company AstraZeneca.

Austria’s Euro 2016 qualifiers sold out
Austria

Austria’s Euro 2016 qualifiers sold out

Tickets for Austria's home matches in the forthcoming European Championship qualifiers have all sold out, just two hours after being released.

Madrid restaurant owner hacked to death
Spain

Madrid restaurant owner hacked to death

The 42-year-old owner of a restaurant on the outskirts of Spain's capital was found dead at his home in what police believe was a gruesome robbery.

Frenchman returns to jail to get away from partner
France

Frenchman returns to jail to get away from partner

A Frenchman recently released on parole purposefully cut off his electronic tag, knowing he would be sent back to prison. The reason why? He was desperate to get away from his girlfriend.

Game of Thrones star on violence against women
Germany

Game of Thrones star on violence against women

German-Turkish actress Sibel Kekilli has reached international stardom through her role as the beautiful Shae in the fantasy TV drama Game of Thrones. She talks to The Local about her character and violence against women.

Test on football shooting suspect negative
Italy

Test on football shooting suspect negative

A 48-year-old man suspected of shooting three Napoli fans ahead of the Italian Cup final in Rome on Saturday has tested negative for gunshot residue, the Italian news agency Ansa reported on Tuesday.

‘Crucifixion killing’ could be linked to six cases
Italy

‘Crucifixion killing’ could be linked to six cases

One day after the body of a woman was found taped to a horizontal bar in Florence “as if she had been crucified”, police are investigating possible links to six other cases from the past ten years as fears grow that there could be a serial killer on the loose.

Sweden drops to ‘third best’ place to be a mum
Sweden

Sweden drops to ‘third best’ place to be a mum

Sweden offers the world's third best deal for mothers, but was beaten to the top spot by two neighbours. In contrast, the new report said that Somalia and the US needed to buck up and invest in maternal and infant health.

VIDEO: Paris exhibition pays hommage to tattoos
France

VIDEO: Paris exhibition pays hommage to tattoos

A new exhibition at the famous Paris gallery at Quai Branly opened on Tuesday that honors the art of tattoos. Take a look inside with this video courtesy of Parisian News TV.

How good is Germany for mothers?
Germany

How good is Germany for mothers?

Germany has been ranked as one of the best places in the world for mothers to raise children. But how family-friendly is the country?

German sailors missing in suspected kidnapping
Germany

German sailors missing in suspected kidnapping

A German couple who disappeared while on a sailing trip in the Philippines could have been kidnapped by a Muslim extremist group with ties to Al-Qaeda.

Nazi-era art trove heir Cornelius Gurlitt dies
Germany

Nazi-era art trove heir Cornelius Gurlitt dies

UPDATE: The reclusive German son of a Nazi-era art dealer who hoarded hundreds of priceless paintings in his Munich flat for decades including works plundered from Jews died on Tuesday aged 81.

Spanish PM ‘open to debate’ on abortion law
Spain

Spanish PM ‘open to debate’ on abortion law

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy Tuesday stuck by his government's plan to curb women's abortion rights but said he was open to debate on the bill which has sparked angry protests.

Italy’s borrowing costs fall below 3 percent
Italy

Italy’s borrowing costs fall below 3 percent

Italy's long-term borrowing costs fell on Tuesday below the three percent level for the first time since the creation of the euro amid a resurgence in investor confidence in the eurozone.

Police find drug lab near Leaning Tower of Pisa
Italy

Police find drug lab near Leaning Tower of Pisa

Police have raided an apartment near the Leaning Tower of Pisa which was used as a laboratory for the packaging of heroin. A young couple has been arrested.

Vatican to beatify Pope Paul VI: source
Italy

Vatican to beatify Pope Paul VI: source

The Vatican has recognized a supposed miracle attributed to Paul VI and will beatify the late Italian pope in October, which would leave him one step from sainthood, a Vatican source said on Tuesday.

Mother kills her three children with BBQ fumes
Germany

Mother kills her three children with BBQ fumes

A mother is believed to have killed her three children and attempted to take her own life through carbon monoxide poisoning by lighting two barbecues in a bedroom.

‘Honeytrap failed to snare Brezhnev’s son’
Sweden

‘Honeytrap failed to snare Brezhnev’s son’

Despite Sweden's pyjama-party heyday and an MI6 lure called "Ann" with a fail-free seduction record, the Swedish security service Säpo failed to honeytrap Leonid Brezhnev's son during the Cold War thanks to a tattle-tale defector.

Norway second best place to be a mum: report
Norway

Norway second best place to be a mum: report

Norway has leapfrogged Sweden to second place in a list of the world's best country in which to be a mother, after reporting a slight rise in maternal mortality.

Wurm’s sculptures makes visitors act like dogs
Austria

Wurm’s sculptures makes visitors act like dogs

Can a work of art happen in a minute? Austrian artist Erwin Wurm's bizarre One Minute Sculptures series is being showcased in a new exhibition at Frankfurt's Städel Museum.

‘Swedish ministers get paid to be off sick’
Sweden

‘Swedish ministers get paid to be off sick’

Several Swedish cabinet ministers have failed to report being off sick, even as one tweeted about 40C fever. The oversight has allowed them to avoid the first-day-off reduction in salary that all Swedes face when feeling too poorly to work.

France to spend €3m on protecting Great Hamster
France

France to spend €3m on protecting Great Hamster

Under pressure from the EU to protect western Europe's only species of wild hamster, France has launched a €3million preservation programme for the endangered Great Hamster of Alsace, whose numbers are rapidly dwindling.

Germany warns of ‘point of no return’ in Ukraine
Germany

Germany warns of ‘point of no return’ in Ukraine

Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier warned on Tuesday that the Ukraine crisis risked degenerating into a full-scale war in eastern Europe.

Fake oil tycoon tricked models into sex slavery
Spain

Fake oil tycoon tricked models into sex slavery

An Iranian man who posed as the CEO for an oil company fooled ten aspiring European and Asian models into being his sex slaves at his palace in the Spanish luxury resort of Marbella.

Milan university to teach most degrees in English
Italy

Milan university to teach most degrees in English

The rector of one of Italy’s top universities in Milan is pushing ahead with a plan for degree courses to be taught in English despite a Lombardy court ruling against the move.

Bridge star Ofterbro to lead National Day TV
Norway

Bridge star Ofterbro to lead National Day TV

Jakob Oftebro, who played menacing green activist Mads in The Bridge, the hit Danish TV series, has been chosen to host the national television coverage of Norway's Constitution Day on 17 May.

Credit Suisse to set up US ‘bad bank’: reports
Switzerland

Credit Suisse to set up US ‘bad bank’: reports

Credit Suisse, facing potential criminal charges for helping Americans dodge taxes, has created a "bad bank" unit for US clients, Swiss media reported on Tuesday.

Breast implants: New report a worry for women
France

Breast implants: New report a worry for women

Ruptures, implants that fail to last the ten years promised, and a heightened risk of lymphatic cancer - a new official French report paints a worrying picture for the 340,000 women in the country who have had their breasts enlarged.

Norway army trials Oculus Rift for tanks
Norway

Norway army trials Oculus Rift for tanks

The Norwegian army's Combat Lab is developing a seriously nifty new use for Oculus Rift, the virtual reality headset owned by Facebook: a viewing system which will make tank drivers feel they are sitting in a transparent vehicle.

Apple iPhone ad in Paris square to be torn down
France

Apple iPhone ad in Paris square to be torn down

France’s culture minister has ordered the removal of a giant advertisement for Apple’s iPhone that locals said was desecrating the facade of a historic building in one of Paris’s most beautiful squares, the Place des Vosges.

Albino snakes invade Spain’s Canary Islands
Spain

Albino snakes invade Spain’s Canary Islands

Albino California king snakes, originally brought to the island as pets decades ago, could take over 70 percent of the Spanish island of Gran Canaria, experts are warning.

The five ‘best’ and worst moments for Hollande
France

The five ‘best’ and worst moments for Hollande

François Hollande's second year as president of France was possibly worse than his first one. We look back at five of his worst moments in the last 12 months and five of his best ones. (Yes he did have some good ones)

Spain must find third way on Catalonia: UK daily
Spain

Spain must find third way on Catalonia: UK daily

Spain must urgently find a third way between an independent nation of Catalonia and the status quo, influential UK business daily the Financial Times said in an editorial published on Monday.

‘Less jail time the more books you read’
Italy

‘Less jail time the more books you read’

Calabria’s Regional Committee has approved a bill that will reward prisoners for reading books by reducing their jail time. Under the proposal, prisoners will see their sentences cut by three days for each book they read.

Bin Laden joker ends up on terror watchlist
Germany

Bin Laden joker ends up on terror watchlist

A man from Munich who wrote "bin Laden" on a bank transfer form as a joke has been added to the German Central Bank's terror blacklist for ten years.

‘Michelangelo’s David statue won’t fall down’
Italy

‘Michelangelo’s David statue won’t fall down’

Florence's museums authority on Tuesday played down the risk of Michelangelo's 500-year-old David statue falling down because of fractures in its ankles.

Sanna Nielsen through to Eurovision final
Sweden

Sanna Nielsen through to Eurovision final

Sweden's Sanna Nielsen and her song Undo were voted through to the Eurovision final after Tuesday night's semi-final in Copenhagen.

Austria intercepts huge heroin shipment
Austria

Austria intercepts huge heroin shipment

Customs officials have found a large stash of heroin hidden in a car transporter traveling through Upper Austria.

Tell us why Sweden needs foreign workers
Sweden

Tell us why Sweden needs foreign workers

OVER TO YOU: With threats to labour migration mooted The Local is inviting readers to tell us why Sweden needs skilled foreign workers. You can upload your videos or pictures via social media to be part of the debate.

Top tennis stars slam domestic abuse in Spain
Spain

Top tennis stars slam domestic abuse in Spain

Some of the world's best female tennis players have come together to raise their voice against violence against women in a video organized by the sponsors of the Madrid Open.

‘Swedish boys will court your foreign daughters’
Sweden

‘Swedish boys will court your foreign daughters’

When his twin daughters were born, The Local correspondent Paul Connolly was told they'd be hot property on the dating market when they grew up - because his girls offered "fresh genes".

World’s fastest tall ship to sail to Norway
Norway

World’s fastest tall ship to sail to Norway

Tall ships from across the world, including the world's fastest and second largest, are preparing to set sail for Fredrikstad, southern Norway, for the Tall Ships Races, the largest regatta of its kind.

Frozen Ukrainian assets total 170 million francs
Switzerland

Frozen Ukrainian assets total 170 million francs

Authorities in Bern have frozen around 170 million francs in assets held in Swiss banks by members of the ousted former Ukrainian regime, latest figures show.

A hitchhiker’s guide to Germany
Germany

A hitchhiker’s guide to Germany

Germany is one of Europe's most hitchhiking friendly spots. The Local went on the road for 450 kilometres to figure out why.

Topless woman touts for bull-running festival
Spain

Topless woman touts for bull-running festival

A small Spanish town has made national headlines after a woman was hired to walk around the streets promoting the local festival of the bulls in only her knickers.

‘Only a miracle can save François Hollande’
France

‘Only a miracle can save François Hollande’

Two years ago François Hollande was cheered on by thousands of jubilant supporters at Place de la Bastille after being elected president of France. But now he is the most unpopular head of state in history. Can he really turn it around and what can he do?

‘Parents’ threaten school head over immigrant kids
Sweden

‘Parents’ threaten school head over immigrant kids

Irate parents have emailed an anonymous murder threat to an "Arab-loving" Swedish school principal, after he split the seventh grade into smaller groups of students to welcome immigrant pupils.

Burger King sorry for poor hygiene
Germany

Burger King sorry for poor hygiene

The head of one of Germany’s biggest Burger King franchises quit on Monday following an undercover report exposing poor hygiene and bad working conditions at the fast food chain’s outlets.

Italian government fails to flog Maseratis on eBay
Italy

Italian government fails to flog Maseratis on eBay

Nine Maserati cars put up for sale by the Italian government on eBay have so far failed to attract a single bid, Italian media reported. The luxury official car sale is part of a symbolic effort to cut outrageous spending by ministries that has sparked public anger.

Austrian Airlines plunges back into the red
Austria

Austrian Airlines plunges back into the red

Austrian Airlines (AUA ) has started off the new financial year in debt. Operational losses for the first quarter reached 54 million euros - only two million less than in the first quarter of 2013.

In Pictures: The Local’s Property of the Week
Sweden

In Pictures: The Local’s Property of the Week

A four-bedroom house perched on the Baggensfjärden strait offers prospective new owners unbeatable views, with Stockholm just around the corner.

Jobless queues shrink by 111,565 in April
Spain

Jobless queues shrink by 111,565 in April

UPDATED: Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy declared on Tuesday that a job-wrecking trend had been snapped after new figures showed a record slump in the jobless queue in April.

Swiss drivers spend more time in tailbacks
Switzerland

Swiss drivers spend more time in tailbacks

Swiss motorists traveled further and suffered through more traffic jams in 2013 than in the previous year, according to federal government figures.

Turin mayor gives the finger to Toro fans
Italy

Turin mayor gives the finger to Toro fans

The mayor of Turin sparked controversy on Monday evening after waving the middle finger at a group of Torino football fans in response to “being insulted” during a ceremony to commemorate the 1949 Supergra plane crash, in which almost all the entire Torino team was killed.

Corruption scam derails Spain’s high-speed trains
Spain

Corruption scam derails Spain’s high-speed trains

Spanish police detained nine people on Monday as part of a probe into suspected embezzlement linked to the construction of a high-speed rail link between Madrid and Barcelona, officials said.

Uefa slams Spain over racist football fans
Spain

Uefa slams Spain over racist football fans

Just a month before the Fifa World Cup kicks off in Brazil, European football's governing body Uefa has slammed racist attacks in Spain and called for action after fans subjected foreign players to monkey taunts and banana-throwing.

UBS records higher first quarter 2014 profits
Switzerland

UBS records higher first quarter 2014 profits

Switzerland's largest bank UBS on Tuesday posted a net profit of 1.05 billion francs ($1.2 billion) for the first quarter of 2014, up seven percent from the first three months of the previous year.

Child murder suspects give clashing evidence
Sweden

Child murder suspects give clashing evidence

IN PICTURES: The Karlskrona couple held on suspicion of killing an 8-year-old girl in their care have told the police contradictory versions of what happened the night the young girl died.

Footballer in trouble for throwing a kebab
Germany

Footballer in trouble for throwing a kebab

A German footballer is being investigated for assault - after he allegedly threw a kebab at fans.

France rejects GE bid for Alstom ‘in current form’
France

France rejects GE bid for Alstom ‘in current form’

The French government on Monday rejected a bid by US industrial giant General Electric for Alstom's energy business, calling for a "balanced partnership" that could include a rail deal.

Swedish woman told she was dead for ten days
Sweden

Swedish woman told she was dead for ten days

A woman in eastern Sweden was shocked when a letter from her insurance company informed her that she had been dead for more than a week.

‘AstraZeneca disappoints us’: Pfizer
Sweden

‘AstraZeneca disappoints us’: Pfizer

US drugs giant Pfizer has said it was disappointed with Anglo-Swedish pharmaceuticals company AstraZeneca for not only rejecting its takeover bid, but refusing to discuss alternatives.

Rescuers save Afghan crossing Channel on raft
France

Rescuers save Afghan crossing Channel on raft

French coast rescuers said they had saved a 23-year-old Afghan trying to cross the Channel on a makeshift raft Monday using a bedsheet as a sail.

France definitively bans GM corn
France

France definitively bans GM corn

France definitively banned the growing of genetically modified corn on Monday after its highest court and Senate both confirmed an existing ban.

Three dead at Berlin tower block
Germany

Three dead at Berlin tower block

UPDATE: A man fell to his death from the balcony of a Berlin tower block on Monday night after the bodies of his partner and her child were found in his flat. He had reportedly been living with the bodies in the apartment for three days.

Norway ski star lied to police after crash
Norway

Norway ski star lied to police after crash

Norwegian cross-country skiing star Petter Northug, a two-time Olympic champion in 2010, has admitted to lying to police when they first contacted him about crashing his car drunk on Sunday morning.