Is this the worst summer job ever?
Norway

Is this the worst summer job ever?

A nineteen-year-old in Norway has been hired by a sexual health charity to play a giant penis who surprises passers-by by spraying them with golden confetti.

Solar Impulse team scrubs Japan take-off
Switzerland

Solar Impulse team scrubs Japan take-off

Mission controllers trying to fly a Swiss solar plane around the world cancelled a take-off from Japan early on Wednesday because of weather problems over the Pacific Ocean.

Norwegian anti-booze ad goes viral
Norway

Norwegian anti-booze ad goes viral

An advert by a Norwegian anti-alcohol campaign group is probably the last thing you’d expect to go viral. But then again, never has not drinking looked quite so cool.

Norway’s second biggest religion is ‘none’
Norway

Norway’s second biggest religion is ‘none’

To hear some politicians talk, you’d think Norway was a breath away from becoming a Muslim country. But in fact the country’s second largest ‘religion’ after Christianity isn’t even Islam, it’s no religion at all.

Norway ski legend takes two years off for baby
Norway

Norway ski legend takes two years off for baby

Norwegian Nordic skiing champion Marit Bjørgen is expecting a baby in December and will not participate in the World Cup this season, she told Norwegian media on Tuesday.

E-bike accidents prompt Swiss safety campaign
Switzerland

E-bike accidents prompt Swiss safety campaign

Worried about the growing number of accidents involving electric bicycles, Swiss government officials are launching a campaign to boost public awareness of the risks and ways to improve safety.

As it happened: Queen arrives in Berlin
Germany

As it happened: Queen arrives in Berlin

UPDATED: Queen Elizabeth II arrived in Berlin on Tuesday night. Here's how the first moments of her three-day visit unfolded.

Yes, you CAN buy ’50 Shades’ before 10pm
Germany

Yes, you CAN buy ’50 Shades’ before 10pm

The internet has been abuzz this week over reports that Germany has banned the sale of adult e-books before 10pm. But book industry officials told The Local that the issue has been falsely reported.

Austria to formally object over UK nuke subsidy
Austria

Austria to formally object over UK nuke subsidy

Austria will next week officially file a legal complaint in Brussels against state subsidies for Britain's planned new Hinkley Point nuclear power plant, the government in Vienna said on Tuesday.

Poisionous gas threatens swimmers on Vulcano
Italy

Poisionous gas threatens swimmers on Vulcano

An odourless, colourless and potentially lethal gas emanating from the sea off the coast of Vulcano in the Aeolian Islands could be putting swimmers at risk.

British shop booms on eve of Queen’s visit
Germany

British shop booms on eve of Queen’s visit

As Queen Elizabeth II embarks on her much-anticipated State Visit to Germany, The Local visits a British shop in Berlin which has been swamped by anglophiles eager to stock up for the big event.

Swedish teens go viral with monster catch video
Sweden

Swedish teens go viral with monster catch video

Two northern Swedish cousins have taken their angling hobby to new levels. A video of the teenagers hauling in a 14-kilo monster catch went viral in Sweden on Tuesday.

Berlusconi’s ex to get €1.4m monthly alimony
Italy

Berlusconi’s ex to get €1.4m monthly alimony

Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi has been ordered to pay his ex-wife €1.4 million ($1.5 million) in alimony as part of a divorce settlement, Italian media reported on Tuesday.

French air traffic controllers call for strike
France

French air traffic controllers call for strike

Air traffic controllers announced on Tuesday that they will hold a two-day strike early next month to protest their wages.

EU commissioner to ‘ban roaming fees by 2017’
Spain

EU commissioner to ‘ban roaming fees by 2017’

Mobile roaming fees are likely to be abolished within the European Union by 2017, it emerged on Monday, a move immediately welcomed by Spanish consumer associations.

Fake Italian restaurant tops TripAdvisor ranking
Italy

Fake Italian restaurant tops TripAdvisor ranking

A restaurant in the northern Italian town of Moniga del Garda has received rave reviews earning it a top spot on the review website TripAdvisor. There’s just one small problem: the establishment does not exist.

French protests cause Channel travel chaos
France

French protests cause Channel travel chaos

UPDATED: Hundreds of protesting French sailors on Tuesday forced the suspension of Eurotunnel services between France and Britain in both directions after torching tyres on the tracks, causing traffic and travel chaos.

Danes are the biggest wasters in the EU: study
Denmark

Danes are the biggest wasters in the EU: study

German statistics office Destatis reported on Tuesday that Danes compile about a full-grown bull’s weight in garbage annually, more than any the residents of any other European country.

Police reconstruct events of Graz tragedy
Austria

Police reconstruct events of Graz tragedy

Austrian police are reconstructing the shocking events which took place in Graz on Saturday, when a “mentally unbalanced” man ploughed his car into a crowd of shoppers on a pedestrian street.

Taxis versus Uber battle turns ugly in France
France

Taxis versus Uber battle turns ugly in France

The conflict between taxi drivers and Uber in France is increasingly turning ugly with one client of Uber allegedly beaten by cabbies at the weekend. More strife could be on its way.

A beginner’s guide to aperitivo in Italy
Italy

A beginner’s guide to aperitivo in Italy

The Italians go crazy for them – and it's easy to see why. The Local gives you the lowdown on one of Italy's most treasured rituals: the aperitivo.

Swedes riled as south becomes ‘Danish’ again

Swedes riled as south becomes ‘Danish’ again

It used to belong to the Danes in the 1600s. Now, part of southern Sweden is set to join up with the Danish capital again, as a controversial marketing campaign dubs the region 'Greater Copenhagen'.

Olé! San Sebastian overturns bullfight ban
Spain

Olé! San Sebastian overturns bullfight ban

The new administration of the northern Spanish city of San Sebastian is to reintroduce bullfighting, three years after it was banned.

Germans among biggest wasters in EU
Germany

Germans among biggest wasters in EU

Federal statistics office Destatis reported on Tuesday that each German compiled about a horse's weight in garbage annually, more than most other European countries.

Denmark’s second-largest religion is ‘none’
Denmark

Denmark’s second-largest religion is ‘none’

Denmark’s Muslim population may get an outsized amount of media and political attention but the second largest ‘religion’ behind Christianity is actually no religion at all.

Gender-bending Gucci sets tone for 2016
Italy

Gender-bending Gucci sets tone for 2016

Male fashion followers will be sporting distinctly androgynous, even outright feminine, looks next year if some of the Spring/Summer 2016 catwalk shows in Milan are a guide.

Italy denies role in CIA rendition of imam
Italy

Italy denies role in CIA rendition of imam

UPDATED: Italy denied any involvement on Tuesday in the CIA's "extraordinary rendition" of an Egyptian imam kidnapped in Milan in 2003 on charges of terrorist connections.

Lion threatened with extinction: IUCN report
Switzerland

Lion threatened with extinction: IUCN report

The mighty lion, reclusive cave crabs and the world's rarest sea lion are among nearly 23,000 species at risk of dying out, a top conservation body based in Switzerland warned on Tuesday.

Judge jails two for causing Autobahn havoc
Germany

Judge jails two for causing Autobahn havoc

Two men have been put away for attempted murder after throwing logs of wood and other heavy objects off Autobahn overpasses as cars passed underneath.

Dog digs up World War II hand grenade
Italy

Dog digs up World War II hand grenade

A Saturday afternoon almost ended in tragedy for a group of children playing in a backyard in Velletri in the province of Rome, when a dog dug up a World War II hand grenade.

EU Commissioner ‘to ban roaming fees by 2017’
Austria

EU Commissioner ‘to ban roaming fees by 2017’

European Digital Economy Commissioner Günther Oettinger has said he wants to abolish roaming fees for mobile phone users within the EU by 2017.

Paris officially joins race for 2024 Olympic Games
France

Paris officially joins race for 2024 Olympic Games

Paris officially threw its hat into the ring on Tuesday for the battle to host the Olympic Games in 2024. The French capital faces tough competition.

Fresh debate for cheaper EU calls from Sweden
Sweden

Fresh debate for cheaper EU calls from Sweden

Swedish politicians welcomed a debate on mobile charges on Tuesday, after the EU's top decisionmaker on the digital market announced that roaming fees could be ditched across the union by 2017.

Two Lisa Holm suspects to stay in police custody
Sweden

Two Lisa Holm suspects to stay in police custody

UPDATED: The two brothers accused of killing missing teenager Lisa Holm are set to remain in police custody, an appeals court in Jönköping in central Sweden ordered on Tuesday.

Danish cycling legend Riis aware of doping
Denmark

Danish cycling legend Riis aware of doping

A comprehensive report on doping in the Danish cycling world revealed on Tuesday that former Tour de France winner Bjarne Riis "had knowledge" that his riders were using performance enhancers.

Update: Brit missing on pilgrim route turns up
Spain

Update: Brit missing on pilgrim route turns up

A British man who went missing after making a distress call while walking the Camino de Santiago in northern Spain has turned up safe and sound on his own two feet.

Were legendary lovers really mother and son?
Spain

Were legendary lovers really mother and son?

Spain's Romeo and Juliet, who even have a Valentine's Day festival in their honour, might actually have been mother and son, a historian has claimed.

Norway knocked out of World Cup
Norway

Norway knocked out of World Cup

Norway was knocked out of World Cup on Monday night, after losing 2:1 to England in a hard fought battle that saw the 1995 champions ahead for seven minutes in the second half.

Danish ship rescues 222 boat refugees
Denmark

Danish ship rescues 222 boat refugees

The Danish shipping firm Torm came to the aid of two rubber dinghies crammed with asylum seekers in the Mediterranean Sea over the weekend, the company said in a press release on Tuesday.

Viral half-baked breakup story faked
Germany

Viral half-baked breakup story faked

A recent story about a messy breakup ending in a man sawing his wife's possessions in half and putting them on Ebay took the internet by storm. It turns out none of it was real, as a German legal magazine set up the whole thing as an advertising ploy.

Fake Le Corbusier furniture to be destroyed
Switzerland

Fake Le Corbusier furniture to be destroyed

Authorities in the canton of Aargau are destroying fake Le Corbusier furniture that was imported through an English internet site after concluding an investigation in Switzerland without any convictions.

France ‘jails 100 Brits’ for migrant smuggling
France

France ‘jails 100 Brits’ for migrant smuggling

There have been an estimated 100 British people jailed in France over the last year for attempting to smuggle migrants across the Channel to the UK, French prosecutors say.

Foreign tourism boom boosts jobs in Sweden
Sweden

Foreign tourism boom boosts jobs in Sweden

Sweden's international tourism industry is flourishing, with global visitors spending more cash in the Nordic nation and thousands of new jobs emerging in the sector.

Seven bizarre health tips Austrians swear by
Austria

Seven bizarre health tips Austrians swear by

Anyone who has lived in Austria will know that Austrians have some weird and wonderful ‘natural’ remedies for common health complaints, but do they help, or are they just a bunch of old wives’ tales?

Hundreds now violently ill after French ‘mud race’
France

Hundreds now violently ill after French ‘mud race’

UPDATED: The number of people who fell sick after taking part in a Mud Day race in southern France has shot up to around 1,000, with the finger of blame being pointed at the bacteria in the mud.

Spain stowaway narrowly escapes crushing death
Spain

Spain stowaway narrowly escapes crushing death

The Civil Guard rescued a young man hiding on a ferry bound for mainland Spain just moments before he would have been crushed to death in the vehicle ramp.

What an Olympic Games in Paris would look like
France

What an Olympic Games in Paris would look like

With the French capital now on the official shortlist to host the 2024 Olympic Games, The Local takes a look at what a Paris Games could look like. Beach volleyball under the Eiffel Tower sound good?

Brothel lamb finally returns to her flock
Germany

Brothel lamb finally returns to her flock

A lamb that was stolen from Nuremberg Zoo and found in a Munich brothel nine days later has finally been returned to its flock, the zoo announced on Monday.

The glorious end of a 225-ton, 93-metre wind turbine
Germany

The glorious end of a 225-ton, 93-metre wind turbine

A renewable energy company in the Bavarian Allgäu has been making space for new wind turbines as quickly as possible - by blowing up the old ones.

Pensioner kills pump attendant in price row
Italy

Pensioner kills pump attendant in price row

A pensioner in Sicily has confessed shooting dead a petrol pump attendant. His motive? The fuel was too expensive.

Union raps Swiss executive pay rises
Switzerland

Union raps Swiss executive pay rises

Top managers at large Swiss companies saw major pay rises in the past several years and continue to be overpaid relative to average workers, a union group charges.

FC Catania rocked by match-fixing scandal
Italy

FC Catania rocked by match-fixing scandal

Police have arrested seven people in an investigation into match-fixing at FC Catania. The men are accused of fixing matches in order to keep the club in Serie B.

French pensioner cuts off power to Spain

French pensioner cuts off power to Spain

A French pensioner's risky political protest had unexpected consequences on Tuesday after his decision to climb up a high-voltage pylon saw a power company shutting down electricity supplies to Spain.

Solar Impulse set to leave Japan for Hawaii
Switzerland

Solar Impulse set to leave Japan for Hawaii

Solar Impulse 2, the Swiss solar-powered plane trapped in Japan for three weeks by the rainy season, is set to take off for Hawaii early on Wednesday on the next leg of its round-the-world trip, the project's team says.

Arrested: Rwanda war criminal wanted by Spain
Spain

Arrested: Rwanda war criminal wanted by Spain

Rwanda's intelligence chief Karenzi Karake has been arrested in London on the request of Spain where he is wanted for on war crime charges.

‘Jellyfish-lamb’ ends up on French plates by error
France

‘Jellyfish-lamb’ ends up on French plates by error

A fluorescent lamb that had been genetically modified with jellyfish protein to give it transparent skin ended up mistakenly being eaten in France, even though it was only meant to be used in research, reports said on Tuesday.

EU Commissioner ‘to ban roaming fees by 2017’
Germany

EU Commissioner ‘to ban roaming fees by 2017’

European Digital Economy Commissioner Günther Oettinger said on Monday that he wants to abolish roaming fees for mobile phone users within the EU by 2017.

IN PHOTOS: Copenhell rocks Danish capital
Denmark

IN PHOTOS: Copenhell rocks Danish capital

For the sixth year running, the Copenhagen harbour-area Refshaleøen played host to the three-day metal tour-de-force known as Copenhell. Check out the photo highlights here.

Podemos turns to US expert for green plan
Spain

Podemos turns to US expert for green plan

Spanish protest party Podemos teamed up on Monday with a top US anti-austerity economist to launch a green energy plan which they said could create hundreds of thousands of jobs.

Bavaria can’t dodge nuclear waste: Minister
Germany

Bavaria can’t dodge nuclear waste: Minister

Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks warned the Bavarian government on Tuesday that complaints wouldn't allow the state to wriggle out of plans to keep nuclear waste within its borders.

Nazi resistance heroine dies aged 95
Austria

Nazi resistance heroine dies aged 95

Irma Schwager, an Austrian heroine of the anti-Nazi resistance, has died aged 95, Austria's communist party said on Monday.

Iconic Italian actress Laura Antonelli dies
Italy

Iconic Italian actress Laura Antonelli dies

Italian actress Laura Antonelli, known for her erotic roles and love affair with French actor Jean-Paul Belmondo, was found dead on Monday at her home near Rome. She was 73.

Merkel greets ‘progress’ in Greece talks
Germany

Merkel greets ‘progress’ in Greece talks

Chancellor Angela Merkel said after a fresh round of eurozone leaders' negotiations on Monday night that she believed a deal to keep Greece in the single currency might be reached this week.

Stolen Swedish art returned by Spanish

Stolen Swedish art returned by Spanish

Spanish police have returned 12 stolen artworks, including several 15th-century wood engravings, to Sweden's embassy in Madrid.

Kidnapped Swede in Mali shown alive in video
Sweden

Kidnapped Swede in Mali shown alive in video

A video appearing to show a Swede and a South African who were kidnapped in Mali in 2011 by Al-Qaeda has emerged.

Suspect drone stops Stockholm air traffic
Sweden

Suspect drone stops Stockholm air traffic

Air traffic in and out of Stockholm’s Arlanda airport was halted on Monday night after a pilot spotted a suspicious looking drone in the sky above the city.

‘How dare Swedes moan it’s too light outside’
Sweden

‘How dare Swedes moan it’s too light outside’

It's the time of year when the sun never sets in the far north of Sweden and even the capital doesn't get dark until gone 10pm. So, after a sun-starved winter, The Local's Maddy Savage hasn't got time for Swedish residents moaning that it's too light at night.