Kercher’s mother ‘shocked’ by Italy verdict
Italy

Kercher’s mother ‘shocked’ by Italy verdict

UPDATED: Meredith Kercher's mother said on Friday she was "surprised and very shocked" by Italy's top court clearing Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito of her daughter's murder.

Knox ‘relieved and grateful’ after Italy verdict
Italy

Knox ‘relieved and grateful’ after Italy verdict

American Amanda Knox expressed "tremendous" relief on Friday after Italy's top court cleared her of the 2007 murder of British student Meredith Kercher, drawing a line under the eight-year legal saga.

Doctors in Norway must tell airline if a pilot is ill
Norway

Doctors in Norway must tell airline if a pilot is ill

If Germanwings pilot Andreas Lubitz had told a doctor in Norway he was too ill to fly, the doctor would have been required to inform his employer, a medical expert with Norway’s Civil Aviation Authority has claimed.

Italy clears Knox and Sollecito of murder
Italy

Italy clears Knox and Sollecito of murder

UPDATED: Italy's top court on Friday cleared Amanda Knox of the 2007 murder of British student Meredith Kercher, bringing a sensational end to an eight-year legal drama.

Austrian airlines mandate ‘two-crew’ rule
Austria

Austrian airlines mandate ‘two-crew’ rule

German and Austrian airlines on Friday joined other international carriers in adopting a new safety rule to ensure two crew are in a plane's cockpit at all times.

Pope to visit Chinese community in Florence
Italy

Pope to visit Chinese community in Florence

Pope Francis will visit one of Italy's largest Chinese communities in November, at a time when the Vatican is engaged in negotiations to normalize relations with Beijing, the Holy See said on Friday.

Germanwings co-pilot hid illness from airline
Spain

Germanwings co-pilot hid illness from airline

The Germanwings co-pilot who crashed his Airbus into the French Alps, killing all 150 aboard, hid a serious illness from the airline, prosecutors said Friday amid reports he was severely depressed.

Marathon Iran nuclear talks hit critical weekend
Switzerland

Marathon Iran nuclear talks hit critical weekend

Marathon Iran nuclear talks headed on Friday towards a critical weekend as Britain said its foreign minister would join his US, Iranian and French counterparts in racing the clock to pin down a deal in Switzerland.

Uproar as Grillo likens Renzi to crash pilot
Italy

Uproar as Grillo likens Renzi to crash pilot

The leader of Italy’s Five Star Movement sparked outrage on Friday when he said there were similarities between the “depressed” Germanwings co-pilot who officials said deliberately crashed his plane, killing 150 people, and Italian premier Matteo Renzi.

Co-pilot ‘hid sick leave note’ for day of crash
France

Co-pilot ‘hid sick leave note’ for day of crash

German prosecutors revealed on Friday that co-pilot Andreas Lubitz, who is believed to have deliberately crashed the Germanwings plane in the Alps, had a sick leave note from his doctor for the day of the crash, but hid his illness from his employers.

Germanwings co-pilot ‘obsessed’ with Alps

Germanwings co-pilot ‘obsessed’ with Alps

Co-pilot Andreas Lubitz, who is believed to have deliberately killed 150 people when he flew a passenger plane into the Alps, was "obsessed" with the French mountain region, one of his peers said on Friday.

Harrowing search at Alps plane crash site goes on
France

Harrowing search at Alps plane crash site goes on

UPDATED: French authorities are yet to find any intact bodies as they continue the painstaking search for victim body parts among the wreckage of the Germanwings plane that crashed in the Alps. Investigators are also hunting for the second black box.

Petrol to cost more as Greens get their way
Sweden

Petrol to cost more as Greens get their way

Sweden's left-wing government proposed a hike in petrol taxes on Friday, citing the drop in oil prices and pressure put on it by its coalition partner the Greens.

Swedish Nobel laureate Tranströmer dies aged  83
Sweden

Swedish Nobel laureate Tranströmer dies aged 83

UPDATED: Swedish poet and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature Tomas Tranströmer has passed away at the age of 83, his publishers confirmed on Friday.

Brother of Alps crash victim: ‘I am in a rage’
France

Brother of Alps crash victim: ‘I am in a rage’

Friends and family members of the victims of the Germanwings plane crash have been left horrified and angry after the revelations that the co-pilot deliberately downed the plane and that he had been signed off sick for the day of the crash. The Local speaks to one man who lost his brother.

Britain seeks scientific collaboration with Spain
Spain

Britain seeks scientific collaboration with Spain

Britain is reaching out to scientists in Spain in the hope of strengthening the exchange of knowledge to further scientific research.

Germany to expand disability rights
Germany

Germany to expand disability rights

A representative of the German Labour Ministry went before a UN Committee on Friday to discuss the government's plan for improved rights for disabled people.

Germanwings captain’s compassion goes viral
Germany

Germanwings captain’s compassion goes viral

A Facebook post describing how a Germanwings pilot personally reassured his passengers of their safety on a flight on Wednesday has received over quarter of a million likes.

Scientists aiming to redefine the kilogram
Germany

Scientists aiming to redefine the kilogram

The German Nation Metrology Institute (PTB) in Braunschweig has set itself the enormous task of finding a new formula for measuring a kilogram.

Sweden Democrat head: ‘I’m on antidepressants’
Sweden

Sweden Democrat head: ‘I’m on antidepressants’

Jimmie Åkesson, who is poised to return as leader of Sweden's nationalist party in April after months of sick leave, has revealed he is taking antidepressants for exhaustion and sleeping difficulties in an interview set to air late on Friday.

What’s on in France: Ten things to do in April
France

What’s on in France: Ten things to do in April

Spring has finally arrived, and it promises a series of fun activities from the Paris marathons to epic Easter egg hunts. Here are ten events in April definitely worth checking out.

Consumer confidence in France hits five-year high
France

Consumer confidence in France hits five-year high

French consumer confidence has hit a five-year high, the Insee statistics agency said on Friday, signalling that households feel more optimistic about the country's growth.

Bundestag passes ‘foreigner toll’ for roads
Germany

Bundestag passes ‘foreigner toll’ for roads

The Bundestag (German parliament) passed a hugely controversial law on Friday which will charge foreigners for the use of German roads.

Spain set to sizzle in sunny Semana Santa
Spain

Spain set to sizzle in sunny Semana Santa

Spring has definitely sprung, as much of Spain will be bathed in warm weather during Easter week, the country’s meteorological agency has predicted.

Alitalia brings in two-person cockpit rule
Italy

Alitalia brings in two-person cockpit rule

Italy's flagship airline Alitalia has changed its rules to ensure there are two people in the cockpit at all times, after French investigators said a Germanwings plane was intentionally downed by a co-pilot.

Austrian teens ‘wanted to be jihadi brides’
Austria

Austrian teens ‘wanted to be jihadi brides’

Three teenage girls from Graz have been detained in custody in Jakomini prison after allegedly planning to leave Austria for Syria where they intended to marry Islamic State fighters.

Norway Pegida head sued for ‘paedo’ blog
Norway

Norway Pegida head sued for ‘paedo’ blog

One of the leaders of the anti-Islamic Pegida movement in Norway has been ordered to pay heavy damages after a prominent scientist was called “a radical left paedo professor” on his blog.

Germanwings co-pilot ‘hid illness’ on crash day
Germany

Germanwings co-pilot ‘hid illness’ on crash day

Germanwings said on Friday that it had no knowledge of a doctor-signed sick note found by investigators at flight 4U9525 co-pilot Andreas Lubitz's flat.

Scandinavian airlines change cockpit rules

Scandinavian airlines change cockpit rules

UPDATED: Norwegian and SAS airlines have announced that they will require two staff in each plane's cockpit at all times following the Germanwings crash this week.

Austria to turn off lights for Earth Hour
Austria

Austria to turn off lights for Earth Hour

Famous landmarks across Austria will go dark for an hour on Saturday evening, in an effort to raise awareness of climate change.

F1 may scrap Italian Grand Prix: Ecclestone
Italy

F1 may scrap Italian Grand Prix: Ecclestone

Bernie Ecclestone on Friday said he was prepared to let the Italian Grand Prix follow Germany by dropping off the Formula One calendar, in a stark warning for organizers.

Denmark issues 11,000 invalid passports
Denmark

Denmark issues 11,000 invalid passports

If you or your family members have been issued a Danish passport since February, it may include a vital mistake that makes it invalid for international travel.

Is Swedish super coach Pia Sundhage quitting?
Sweden

Is Swedish super coach Pia Sundhage quitting?

Swedish football coach Pia Sundhage's contract leading the women's national team runs out next year. And she has not yet made up her mind as to whether or not she wants to stay on. “If they asked me today, I would say no,” she told The Local on Friday.

Paris: Iron Lady to dim lights for Earth Hour
France

Paris: Iron Lady to dim lights for Earth Hour

It may be known as the City of Light but on Saturday evening even Paris and its most famous monument the Eiffel Tower will go dark to mark Earth Hour. Parisians will then have to dance for the Iron Lady to be restored to its glittering glory.

Varoufakis quells rumours of resignation
Germany

Varoufakis quells rumours of resignation

Update: After German tabloid Bild reported that Germany's least-favourite Greek minister Yanis Varoufakis was considering resigning, the minister rejected the story on Twitter.

Doctor (71) sentenced for Holocaust denial
Austria

Doctor (71) sentenced for Holocaust denial

A 71-year-old doctor from Upper Austria has been sentenced to one year’s house arrest for Holocaust denial.

Almodóvar unveils cast for latest film ‘Silencio’
Spain

Almodóvar unveils cast for latest film ‘Silencio’

Celebrated Spanish film director Pedro Almodóvar has unveiled the cast for his next film, Silencio, including his two new "chicas Almodóvar".

Italian pupils suspended for Isis beheading stunt
Italy

Italian pupils suspended for Isis beheading stunt

A group of 13-year-old pupils have been suspended from school after reenacting the beheading of hostages by terrorist group Isis, before distributing the images through social media.

Milan-airport cab fare third priciest in Europe
Italy

Milan-airport cab fare third priciest in Europe

Taxi transfers between central Milan and Malpensa airport are the third most expensive in Europe, with a one-way trip costing over €80, according to research released on Friday from a UK-based travel money specialist.

Germany urgently needs immigrants: study
Germany

Germany urgently needs immigrants: study

A study by the Bertelsmann Institute found on Friday that Germany will need around half a million new immigrants every year until 2050 to maintain its work force.

Pompeu Fabra named ‘young gun’ university
Spain

Pompeu Fabra named ‘young gun’ university

Spain's Pompeu Fabra has been named on a list of the seven "fastest rising young universities in the world" by UK-based Times Higher Education.

Bundesbank tough, public soft on Greece
Germany

Bundesbank tough, public soft on Greece

Bundesbank chief Jens Weidmann said on Friday that he is opposed to giving Greece further financial help because he believes the new government has frittered away too much trust, but a new poll showed that support for a "Grexit" had shrunk below 50 percent.

Ten ‘Italian’ firms that aren’t actually Italian
Italy

Ten ‘Italian’ firms that aren’t actually Italian

The takeover of tyre maker Pirelli by a Chinese firm ignited some fiery debate over the loss of homegrown businesses this week. But the acquisition of prized Italian assets started years ago. The Local has compiled a list of some of the biggest brands that are foreign-owned.

Protests for visit of Dutch right-winger
Austria

Protests for visit of Dutch right-winger

The Dutch right-wing politician Geert Wilders is meeting with Freedom Party (FPÖ) leader Heinz-Christian Strache in Vienna’s Hofburg palace on Friday, to discuss the “threat to Europe through Islamization”.

Pregnant Muslim woman attacked in France
France

Pregnant Muslim woman attacked in France

A headscarf-wearing Muslim woman in her final month of pregnancy was violently assaulted in southern France this week, in what has been labelled an Islamophobic attack.

Town flocks to mourn lost schoolchildren
Germany

Town flocks to mourn lost schoolchildren

President Joachim Gauck arrived in Haltern on Friday to join families and schoolchildren mourning the loss of their classmates and teachers in the Germanwings flight 4U9525 crash.

Geneva-based UBP acquires Coutts business
Switzerland

Geneva-based UBP acquires Coutts business

Swiss family-owned bank Union Bancaire Privée (UBP) announced on Friday that it is acquiring the Royal Bank of Scotland's international private banking and wealth management business.

IN PICTURES: Grieving relatives visit crash site
France

IN PICTURES: Grieving relatives visit crash site

Dozens of grieving family members have gathered in the small village in the French Alps near to where the Germanwings plane crashed into the mountainside killing all 150 people on board. A remembrance ceremony was held on Thursday.

Copenhagen airport cab fares second priciest
Denmark

Copenhagen airport cab fares second priciest

Taxi transfers from downtown Copenhagen to the airport are the second most expensive in Europe, according to research released on Friday from a UK-based travel money specialist.

Marion Cotillard to take Joan of Arc to New York
France

Marion Cotillard to take Joan of Arc to New York

French actress Marion Cotillard will play Joan of Arc with the New York Philharmonic in a production of Arthur Honegger's oratorio, the orchestra announced on Thursday.

Stieg Larsson’s partner blasts trilogy sequel
Sweden

Stieg Larsson’s partner blasts trilogy sequel

The partner of Sweden's best-known contempory author Stieg Larsson has criticised the decision to publish a fourth installment of his Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy, written by another author.

Pensioner claims €15m Picasso was a gift

Pensioner claims €15m Picasso was a gift

UPDATED: Italian police are trying to establish the true owner of a Picasso painting worth €15 million after confiscating it from a pensioner who says he was given it for free.

Co-pilot suffered bout of ‘serious depression’
France

Co-pilot suffered bout of ‘serious depression’

The Germanwings co-pilot said to have deliberately crashed his Airbus with 149 others aboard into the French Alps suffered a bout of serious depression six years ago, German daily Bild reported on Friday.

Swiss probe ‘animal cell’ injection clinics
Switzerland

Swiss probe ‘animal cell’ injection clinics

Swiss health regulators say they have launched a criminal probe into dozens of clinics suspected of giving clients potentially dangerous animal cell injections as part of anti-ageing treatments.

EPFL among ‘fastest rising young universities’
Switzerland

EPFL among ‘fastest rising young universities’

Switzerland’s EPFL has been named to a list of the seven “fastest rising young universities in the world” by UK-based Times Higher Education.

International Day against Cyber Censorship: NFGL workshops
Sweden

International Day against Cyber Censorship: NFGL workshops

On March 12 the International Day against Cyber Censorship is celebrated worldwide. NFGL members at Örebro University devoted one of their seminars to the event. A seminar “Media and Human Rights in Contemporary World: Problems and Prospects” was held in mid-March and focused on such thematic issues. NFGL members Olga Mashtaler and Nrjhar Mazumder write about this event.

Judges burn midnight oil mulling Knox fate
Italy

Judges burn midnight oil mulling Knox fate

UPDATED: Judges at Italy's top court worked into the evening on Friday mulling whether to uphold the murder conviction of Amanda Knox in what could be the final act of an eight-year legal drama.

Co-pilot had ‘serious’ depressive episode

Co-pilot had ‘serious’ depressive episode

Update: Police said they had no "smoking gun" after a search of Germanwings co-pilot Andreas Lubitz's home, after tabloid Bild reported on Friday that Lubitz received treatment for a “serious depressive episode” during a break in his training six years ago.

Number of EU students on state support way up
Denmark

Number of EU students on state support way up

The number of European citizens receiving the Danish student stipend known as SU has increased sevenfold since a EU court ruled in 2013 that foreign students have the right to benefit from the system.

Conte primes Juve-inspired Italy for Bulgaria
Italy

Conte primes Juve-inspired Italy for Bulgaria

World Cup flops Italy look to continue their strong start to Euro 2016 qualifying when they face Bulgaria away in a Group H clash that could revive memories of coach Antonio Conte's spell at Juventus.

Naples’ pizza offered for Unesco heritage menu
Italy

Naples’ pizza offered for Unesco heritage menu

Italy has chosen Neapolitan pizza as its candidate for protection under Unesco's Intangible Cultural Heritage list, Italian media reported late on Thursday.

Ikea flat-pack shelters set to house refugees
Sweden

Ikea flat-pack shelters set to house refugees

Flat-pack shelters produced by Swedish furniture giant Ikea are set to provide temporary homes to thousands of refugees in camps around the world.

Airlines rush to bring in two-person cockpit rule

Airlines rush to bring in two-person cockpit rule

Airlines around the world including low-cost carrier easyJet, rushed to implement a new rule that two crew members must be in the cockpit at all times. It follows revelations that the co-pilot of the doomed Germanwings plane deliberately crashed the aircraft.

Italian prosecco sales continue to fizz
Italy

Italian prosecco sales continue to fizz

If there was one tipple wine lovers couldn't get enough of last year it was prosecco, the Italian sparkler that has outstripped champagne as the world's favourite bubbly.

Swedish feminist party launches in Oslo

Swedish feminist party launches in Oslo

The feminist party which came close to entering parliament in last year’s Swedish election launched in Oslo on Thursday night, selecting its first candidate to compete in the city’s municipal elections, as it seeks to spread its influence across Scandinavia.

Airlines agree two-person cockpit rule
Germany

Airlines agree two-person cockpit rule

The Federation of the German Air Travel Industry (BDL) confirmed on Friday afternoon that from now on two people must be in the cockpit at all times, in a bid to avoid a repeat of the Germanwings disaster.

Geneva-airport cab fares ‘priciest in Europe’
Switzerland

Geneva-airport cab fares ‘priciest in Europe’

Taxi transfers from downtown Geneva to its airport are the most expensive in Europe, according to research released on Friday from a UK-based travel money specialist.

15 more found guilty as Christiania trials roll on
Denmark

15 more found guilty as Christiania trials roll on

After Thursday's verdict, over 60 individuals have been sentenced to more than 160 years in prison for selling cannabis in Pusher Street.

Swedish PM faces rights pressure in China
Sweden

Swedish PM faces rights pressure in China

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven landed in China on Friday for a two-day visit. But on the home front he has been facing pressure to push more to get human rights on the agenda when he meets with Chinese leaders.

How to Make Chocolate Truffles for Easter
Sweden

How to Make Chocolate Truffles for Easter

If you are looking for a fun alternative to Easter eggs, why not try Swedish chocolate truffles. They are delicious, easy to make and kids can help you make these delightful sweets. Food writer John Duxbury shares his recipe with The Local.