War injuries could identify Cervantes’ bones
Spain

War injuries could identify Cervantes’ bones

Researchers looking for the remains of Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes, the author of "Don Quixote", said on Friday that his war injuries could hold the key to identifying him.

‘Spain’s PM knew of slush fund from the start’
Spain

‘Spain’s PM knew of slush fund from the start’

An ex-official of Spain's governing party reignited a corruption scandal on Friday, months ahead of a general election, by alleging Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy knowingly tolerated irregular payments to politicians.

Muslims pray for France as reprisals soar
France

Muslims pray for France as reprisals soar

Muslims at over 2,000 mosques in France will gather at 1:30pm on Friday to pray for France and its future. Meanwhile, there have been more anti-Muslim incidents recorded in the last two weeks in France than in the whole of 2014.

Ten French words you’ll never hear in France
France

Ten French words you’ll never hear in France

Ever heard someone say "Tiggy-doo?" in France? It's French (actually spelled Tiguidou) and it's just one example of a long list of Gallic words that you'll never come across in France.

The unlikely jihadist who gave up life in France
France

The unlikely jihadist who gave up life in France

A young man with a promising future has astonished friends and family by leaving France to join jihadists in Syria. As more Europeans leave for Syria, experts say that most come from poverty and broken homes.

Could France be the next country to ban sunbeds?
France

Could France be the next country to ban sunbeds?

France has around 40,000 sunbeds in tanning lounges around the country but could they soon become outlawed? One of the country’s leading consumer rights associations has called for them to be banned due to the health risks.

First woman heading Lloyd’s lauds diversity
Switzerland

First woman heading Lloyd’s lauds diversity

As the first female head in the 325-year history of the Lloyd's of London insurance market, Inga Beale is something of a shining light at the World Economic Forum in Davos, where gender equality is a key theme this year.

Evicted in Madrid: family with one-month-old baby
Spain

Evicted in Madrid: family with one-month-old baby

Over 50 police were allegedly on hand in Madrid on Friday for the home eviction of a family with three children including a six-week-old baby.

‘Frozen’ hanging woman died ‘climbing fence’
Sweden

‘Frozen’ hanging woman died ‘climbing fence’

A woman found hanging dead on a fence in Norrköping, about one hour south of Stockholm, was pierced by razor-sharp spikes, but probably ended up there 'by accident', police have concluded.

Hollande: ‘Big business must help fight terror’
Switzerland

Hollande: ‘Big business must help fight terror’

On his first visit to the World Economic Forum in Davos on Friday, French president François Hollande told the corporate world it must play its part in fighting terrorism.

Sweden’s first LGBT pool makes a loud splash
Sweden

Sweden’s first LGBT pool makes a loud splash

The first swimming pool in Sweden designed for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people is making waves in the Swedish media, ahead of its official opening next week.

Princess Madeleine ‘not involved in any debt’
Sweden

Princess Madeleine ‘not involved in any debt’

Sweden's royal family has strongly denied claims that Princess Madeleine's husband Chris O'Neill has debts in the US, saying the US tax authorities 'made a mistake'.

Airport operator Aena to be floated on Feb 11th
Spain

Airport operator Aena to be floated on Feb 11th

Spain's government will float a minority stake in the world's largest airport operator, Aena, on the stock market on February 11th, Transport Minister Ana Pastor said on Friday.

Controversial Danish mosque praised by cops
Denmark

Controversial Danish mosque praised by cops

The controversial Grimhøj Mosque in Aarhus is making headlines once again, but this time the news has a distinctly more positive tone.

Romania and Sweden to cooperate on beggars
Sweden

Romania and Sweden to cooperate on beggars

Sweden and Romania have said they will cooperate and work against fighting poverty within the Roma community, following key talks between ministers from both countries in Stockholm.

Merkel confident Renzi will deliver on reforms
Italy

Merkel confident Renzi will deliver on reforms

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday backed Italy's Matteo Renzi to deliver on a pledge to "turbo-charge" his reforms after the European Central Bank's decision to pump billions into the moribund eurozone economy.

Hollande: ‘Big business must help fight terror’
France

Hollande: ‘Big business must help fight terror’

On his first visit to the World Economic Forum in Davos on Friday, French president François Hollande told the corporate world it must play its part in fighting terrorism. "There will be no prosperity without security," he said.

Italian man lost driving licence for being gay
Italy

Italian man lost driving licence for being gay

An Italian man who lost his driving licence after being told he was not mentally fit to drive due to being gay has won a 15-year legal battle against two Italian ministries.

Merkel to Greece: ‘remain part of our story’
Germany

Merkel to Greece: ‘remain part of our story’

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday she wanted Greece to "remain part of our story", ahead of elections this weekend which could sweep the anti-austerity Syriza party to power and determine whether the country stays in the eurozone.

What’s on in Spain: February 2015
Spain

What’s on in Spain: February 2015

From blowing away the cobwebs at the Seville marathon to marvelling at the creating of the most exciting new designers at Madrid fashion week, here are some of the best events going on around Spain in February, all guaranteed to beat those winter blues.

Spain minimum wage too low: Council of Europe
Spain

Spain minimum wage too low: Council of Europe

The Spanish minimum wage of €648.60 ($730) a month is not sufficient to ensure a decent standard of living, the Council of Europe has said in a new report.

Snapchat and Instagram growing fast in Denmark
Denmark

Snapchat and Instagram growing fast in Denmark

A report on Danes' media use in 2014 shows that streaming services are quickly growing and younger people are using Facebook less and other social media platforms more.

Begging scheme seeks to button up critics
Sweden

Begging scheme seeks to button up critics

A breakthrough project is aiming to help more of Sweden's growing Roma community into work, by selling buttons designed to challenge discrimination against the group, as The Local's Norhan Elkaheem reports.

Serial bigamist on trial in Vienna
Austria

Serial bigamist on trial in Vienna

The trial of a Gambian man who was arrested in Austria on charges of bigamy and fraud has started.

France pushes to break ‘Robin Hood tax’ impasse
France

France pushes to break ‘Robin Hood tax’ impasse

France's finance minister has made a new push to revive Europe's financial transaction tax in a bid to break a deadlock among 11 European countries. But analysts doubt it will ever see the light of day.

Merkel wants Greece to ‘remain part of our story’
Italy

Merkel wants Greece to ‘remain part of our story’

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in Florence on Friday she wanted Greece to "remain part of our story", ahead of elections this weekend which could sweep the anti-austerity Syriza party to power and determine whether the country stays in the eurozone.

Another nun gives birth in Italy
Italy

Another nun gives birth in Italy

A nun has given birth in Italy after going to hospital with a stomach ache, a year after a similar case in a country still strongly influenced by the Catholic Church.

Woman flees gun-toting husband
Austria

Woman flees gun-toting husband

A woman in Upper Austria had to take refuge in a kindergarten with her two-year-child after her husband threatened her with a gun on Thursday morning.

North Korea mistakenly outraged at Berlinale
Germany

North Korea mistakenly outraged at Berlinale

North Korea turned harsh diplomatic language against Berlin's film festival in the mistaken belief that The Interview, the James Franco and Seth Rogen comedy about a murder plot against dictator Kim Jong Un, will be screened there.

How private jets took down a Swedish giant
Sweden

How private jets took down a Swedish giant

One of Sweden's top businessmen Sverker Martin-Löf quit as chairman of industry giant Industrivärden this week amid a scandal over private jets and hunting trips. The Local looks at one of the biggest corporate scandals in Sweden in decades.

Euro hits fresh lows against Swiss franc
Switzerland

Euro hits fresh lows against Swiss franc

The euro dropped to its lowest level ever against the Swiss franc during currency trading on Friday, a day after the European Central Bank introduced a scheme to inject €1.1 trillion into the eurozone’s economy over 18 months.

Let’s officialize Muslim community: Berlin SPD
Germany

Let’s officialize Muslim community: Berlin SPD

Social Democratic Party (SPD) leader Raed Saleh wants to create a contract with the Muslim community similar to the one between the town hall and Christian and Jewish groups that grants them official status.

Denmark sees asylum numbers double in 2014
Denmark

Denmark sees asylum numbers double in 2014

The 14,815 people who sought asylum in Denmark last year is nearly double the number from the year before and an almost fourfold increase from 2009.

Drug bust: 55 arrested in raids on hash ring
Spain

Drug bust: 55 arrested in raids on hash ring

Spanish police have seized 11 tonnes of hashish and detained 55 people as part of a vast operation targeting a Moroccan drug trafficking ring, sources said on Friday.

Austrian protesters support flogged blogger
Austria

Austrian protesters support flogged blogger

Around 80 people gathered outside Vienna's controversial Saudi-financed religious dialogue centre on Friday, to protest against the flogging of blogger Raif Badawi.

Saudi king’s death ‘will not change oil policy’
Switzerland

Saudi king’s death ‘will not change oil policy’

The chief economist of the International Energy Agency said in Davos on Friday that there would be no "significant" changes to Saudi oil policy following the death of King Abdullah.

Firm ditches Pegida chief for anti-Islam views
Norway

Firm ditches Pegida chief for anti-Islam views

Max Hermansen, the leader of the Norway branch of the anti-Islam movement Pegida, has been taken off the pay roll by a training organization because of his controversial views.

Islamic school closed for ‘endangering children’
Austria

Islamic school closed for ‘endangering children’

A private Islamic primary school in Vienna's Brigittenau district has been shut down as the city council believes its students’ welfare was endangered, the Kurier newspaper reports.

Madrid: local government raided in graft probe
Spain

Madrid: local government raided in graft probe

A High Court judge ordered searches of several Madrid government offices on Thursday as part of an ongoing investigation into a massive kickbacks scheme involving politicians and businessmen across the country.

Cities see slower house price growth
Germany

Cities see slower house price growth

A trend for ever-faster growth in house prices across Germany was reversed in 2014, as prices rose by four percent compared with seven the previous year 2013.

Anti-terror law may allow secret agents into jails
Italy

Anti-terror law may allow secret agents into jails

Italy’s draft anti-terrorism package, set to be debated next week, includes a measure that will allow secret agents to question prisoners.

Austria’s response to the Russian bear
Austria

Austria’s response to the Russian bear

Gustav Gressel is Visiting Fellow on the Wider Europe Programme with the European Council on Foreign Relations. In this feature, he looks at the Austrian views on how Europe as a whole should respond to Russia, especially in the light of its unacknowledged war on its European neighbour, Ukraine.

Asylum seeker requests soar in Switzerland
Switzerland

Asylum seeker requests soar in Switzerland

The number of requests for asylum by refugees in Switzerland rose in 2014 by 11 percent to 23,765 from the previous year, the highest rate in more than a decade, according to government figures.

Flu epidemic strikes Spain
Spain

Flu epidemic strikes Spain

The number of flu cases in Spain has tripled over the course of a week, causing 20 deaths across the country, with the number of cases set to rise even further in the coming weeks.

New video debunks Italian stereotypes
Italy

New video debunks Italian stereotypes

A new video aims to set the record straight over Italian stereotypes, instead celebrating Italy as a country of the “extraordinary commonplace”.

Court OKs taking French nationality from jihadist
France

Court OKs taking French nationality from jihadist

In a landmark ruling France's top court agreed on Friday that it was lawful to strip a binational jihadist of his French nationality after he was convicted of a terrorism offence.

Court probes abuse at Catholic boarding school
Germany

Court probes abuse at Catholic boarding school

A monk and former teacher at a boarding school in the Bavarian alps pleaded not guilty on Thursday at his trial for abusing two pupils and attempted abuse of two more.

PM wants ‘settlement policy’ to break ghettos
France

PM wants ‘settlement policy’ to break ghettos

Days after stirring up a hornet's nest by talking of apartheid in France, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls raised more eyebrows on Thursday when he called for a "settlement policy" to fight against the "ghettoisation" of neighbourhoods with strong immigrant populations.

Many young Danes approve ‘sugar dating’
Denmark

Many young Danes approve ‘sugar dating’

A representative survey among Danes aged 15-20 found high levels of support to the idea of giving sex in exchange for gifts though less readiness to actually follow through on it.

Ex-ruling party bigwig bailed in graft probe
Spain

Ex-ruling party bigwig bailed in graft probe

The unrepentant ex-treasurer of Spain's ruling party was released from prison late Thursday after posting bail pending his corruption trial, throwing the spotlight back on a scandal that has embarrassed the government months before a general election.

‘Fight harder’ against corruption: activists
Germany

‘Fight harder’ against corruption: activists

Campaigners say the states can do more to fight corruption after a report showed that Brandenburg, Saarland, North Rhine-Westphalia and Hamburg had the highest numbers of cases.

Denmark supports negotiating with Assad
Denmark

Denmark supports negotiating with Assad

Denmark's foreign minister says that peace talks must accept the reality that Bashar al-Assad continues to be the one sitting on power as Syria's conflict nears its four-year mark.

Federer knocked out of Open by unseeded Seppi

Federer knocked out of Open by unseeded Seppi

Swiss legend Roger Federer was dumped out of the Australian Open by unseeded Italian Andreas Seppi in a major upset on Friday.

Nobel writer to tread boards in Spain
Spain

Nobel writer to tread boards in Spain

Nobel-winning Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa is to tread the boards next week in the premier of his latest work in Spain.

Frenchman creates Valentine’s Day fart pills
France

Frenchman creates Valentine’s Day fart pills

The French inventor of the famous scented flatulence pills designed to make bodily gases smell more pleasant has added a new flavour to his repertoire, just in time for Valentine's Day.

Big freeze to hit northern France at weekend
France

Big freeze to hit northern France at weekend

UPDATED: Driving could be hazardous in northern France this weekend with weather warnings issued for 30 départements, including Paris, as an icy spell and sub-zero temperatures are set to hit the region.

Renzi woos Merkel amid Florentine splendour
Germany

Renzi woos Merkel amid Florentine splendour

The eurozone's deep divisions were set to be given an airing in Florence on Friday as Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi hosted German Chancellor Angela Merkel days before crucial elections in Greece.

Explosion outside Malmö apartment building
Sweden

Explosion outside Malmö apartment building

Police in Malmö are investigating after an explosion outside an apartment block, the latest in a string of bombings in the city.

Geometry and genitals parade on Paris catwalks
France

Geometry and genitals parade on Paris catwalks

Paris fashion week has had everything from geometrical clothes with a sporty bent -- or, in one case, outfits proudly displaying their manhood.

Merkel offers Russia free-trade agreement
Germany

Merkel offers Russia free-trade agreement

Germany would be prepared to negotiate a free-trade agreement between the European Union and Russia as a way out of the deadlocked Ukraine conflict, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday.

Italian sprinters cleared of doping claims
Italy

Italian sprinters cleared of doping claims

Three Italian athletes accused of doping after setting a new national record in the 4x100 metres were cleared of any wrongdoing by the Italian Olympic Committee (Coni) on Thursday.

Renzi uses Florence’s splendour to woo Merkel
Italy

Renzi uses Florence’s splendour to woo Merkel

The eurozone's deep divisions were set to be given an airing on Thursday as Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi hosted German Chancellor Angela Merkel days before crucial elections in Greece.

Pope sees ‘dangers’ amid Vatican terror threat
Italy

Pope sees ‘dangers’ amid Vatican terror threat

Pope Francis on Thursday told Italian police officers in charge of security around the Vatican that he saw "shadows and dangers", but urged them not to give in to fear.

Get more ‘gigaliners’ on roads: Minister
Germany

Get more ‘gigaliners’ on roads: Minister

Environmentalists and train companies reacted with outrage to Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt's plan to allow more giant "gigaliner" trucks on motorways before they've passed a trial period.

Doctors flee Italy in their thousands
Italy

Doctors flee Italy in their thousands

Thousands of doctors have left Italy in recent years to seek opportunities abroad, fleeing a lack of opportunities at home, Italian media reported on Thursday.

One in three fears terror attack in Sweden
Sweden

One in three fears terror attack in Sweden

A new poll carried out after the deadly shootings in France this month suggests that one in three Swedes are concerned about a terror attack in their home country.

Swedish recipe of the day: How to make traditional semla buns
Sweden

Swedish recipe of the day: How to make traditional semla buns

Impress your Swedish friends by making these beloved and very, very creamy semlor. This is our favourite recipe.