Norway to let 7-yr-olds change gender
Norway

Norway to let 7-yr-olds change gender

Children as young as seven would be allowed to change their legal gender under a bill proposed by Norway’s government on Thursday, bringing it one of the lowest ages for transgender rights anywhere in the world.

‘Russia rehearsed invasion of Norway’
Norway

‘Russia rehearsed invasion of Norway’

Tens of thousands of Russian soldiers in March simulated a ‘blitzkrieg’ invasion of northern Norway, a new report from the Center for European Policy Analysis, a US security think tank, has claimed.

Bern extraditing war crimes suspect to Bosnia
Switzerland

Bern extraditing war crimes suspect to Bosnia

Switzerland on Thursday authorized the extradition of former Bosnian Muslim commander Naser Oric to Bosnia rather than Serbia, which had issued the war crimes warrant for his arrest.

Swiss teen Bencic makes Eastbourne semifinals
Switzerland

Swiss teen Bencic makes Eastbourne semifinals

Caroline Wozniacki defeated Germany's Andrea Petkovic 7-5, 6-1 on Thursday to set up an Eastbourne International tennis tournament semifinal against Swiss teenager Belinda Bencic.

Court denies extradition of Russian gangster
Austria

Court denies extradition of Russian gangster

An Austria appeals court overturned the planned extradition to Russia of the alleged head of a brutal organised crime gang wanted by Moscow on Thursday, citing human rights concerns.

Geneva club sandwiches remain ‘priciest in world’
Switzerland

Geneva club sandwiches remain ‘priciest in world’

Geneva hotels remain the most expensive place in the world to order a club sandwich for a third consecutive year, according to an annual survey.

Russia rehearsed ‘takeover’ of Denmark
Denmark

Russia rehearsed ‘takeover’ of Denmark

A new US report reveals that thousands of Russian soldiers took part in a huge military exercise which simulated a takeover of Bornholm, the second such Russian exercise aimed at the Danish island.

‘Abortion drone’ to fly from Germany to Poland
Germany

‘Abortion drone’ to fly from Germany to Poland

A Dutch women's rights group said Thursday it will fly a drone carrying abortion pills into Poland this weekend to highlight the staunchly Catholic country's restrictive abortion laws.

Swedish star’s kickabout with young fan goes viral
Sweden

Swedish star’s kickabout with young fan goes viral

A sweet story about how a big-hearted Swedish national football star made an eight-year-old fan's day has gone viral in Sweden.

East German economy still lagging, study finds
Germany

East German economy still lagging, study finds

The eastern German economy is still struggling to catch up with the west, 25 years after unification, largely because of a lack of large companies in the region, the economy ministry said on Thursday.

Rome Mayor Marino sent bullet in post
Italy

Rome Mayor Marino sent bullet in post

Mail handlers in Rome have found an envelope containing a letter and bullet destined for the city's mayor, as the politician faces mounting pressure over the investigation into a mafia network suspected of operating out of Rome city hall.

Security alert grounds plane in Copenhagen
Denmark

Security alert grounds plane in Copenhagen

A Turkish Airlines flight made an emergency landing in Copenhagen Airport on Thursday following the discovery of a suspicious object on board.

France vows to stop UberPop amid protests
France

France vows to stop UberPop amid protests

UPDATED: The French government responded to nationwide protests by taxi drivers on Thursday by vowing to crackdown on ride-sharing app UberPop. There were ugly scenes across the country as protests turned violent.

Snail slime: Italy’s latest beauty craze
Italy

Snail slime: Italy’s latest beauty craze

Italians are increasingly opting for natural cosmetics - some of them perhaps a little too close to the earth. The latest trend among young Italians? Skin creams made from snail slime.

Firmino transfer confirms Bundesliga’s worst fears
Germany

Firmino transfer confirms Bundesliga’s worst fears

Liverpool confirmed the purchase of FC Hoffenheim forward Roberto Firmino on Wednesday for €41 million, breaking a German record and striking fear into German pundits in the process.

Swedish retail giant H&M enjoys soaring profits
Sweden

Swedish retail giant H&M enjoys soaring profits

Swedish fashion giant H&M reported an 11 percent boost in its profits in the second quarter of the year, on the back of a 20 percent jump in sales.

Two Spaniards die after being gored by bulls
Spain

Two Spaniards die after being gored by bulls

GRAPHIC FOOTAGE: Two men have died after being gored by bulls in two separate incidents during Spain’s San Juan fiesta.

Woman fakes death with ketchup to dodge lover
Germany

Woman fakes death with ketchup to dodge lover

Police announced on Wednesday that bloody photographs sent by the ex-lover of a heartbroken man from Bonn were fake and that his old flame was still alive.

German scientists find oldest-ever fossil tortoise
Germany

German scientists find oldest-ever fossil tortoise

Palaeontologists in south-western Germany have made an incredible discovery – the oldest ever tortoise fossil in the world, clocking in at a whopping 240 million years.

Greece talks have ‘lost ground’: Merkel
Germany

Greece talks have ‘lost ground’: Merkel

Chancellor Angela Merkel warned on Thursday that talks between Greece and its creditors were losing ground as a final deadline for avoiding the country's bankruptcy approaches.

‘Russia rehearsed invasion of Sweden’
Sweden

‘Russia rehearsed invasion of Sweden’

Claims that thousands of Russian soldiers took part in a huge military exercise which simulated a takeover of the Swedish island of Gotland earlier this year have caused jitters in Sweden.

Rwanda blames war crime arrest on racism
Spain

Rwanda blames war crime arrest on racism

Rwandan President Paul Kagame launched a furious attack on Western countries on Thursday after the arrest in Britain of the country's intelligence chief on the request of Spain.

Italian mayor calls migrant crisis ‘genocide’
Italy

Italian mayor calls migrant crisis ‘genocide’

Failing to provide asylum seekers with safe passage to the EU while hundreds die at sea is tantamount to genocide, a mayor on the frontline of the crisis warned on Thursday.

Five Gaudí gems you’ve probably never heard of
Spain

Five Gaudí gems you’ve probably never heard of

We’ve all heard of the Sagrada Familia, Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí’s breathtaking opus that towers over Barcelona, but some of his best designs remain relatively undiscovered.

Courtney Love egged in Paris anti-Uber protest
France

Courtney Love egged in Paris anti-Uber protest

Rocker Courtney Love blasted the French president on Thursday saying "where are the f**king police" after the car she was travelling in was attacked in violent anti-Uber protests in Paris. Tourists also spoke of their shock as cars were burned and vandalized.

Expat homeowners win victory over demolitions
Spain

Expat homeowners win victory over demolitions

New legislation will protect thousands of homeowners across the Spanish costas whose properties are threatened with demolition after falling foul of planning laws.

Pirlo ready for New York move: report
Italy

Pirlo ready for New York move: report

Andrea Pirlo's move to Major League Soccer is imminent, according to reports in Italy that claim the Juventus and Italy star will sign an 18-month deal with New York City FC.

Swiss yachtsman missing in Polynesia
Switzerland

Swiss yachtsman missing in Polynesia

Swiss yachtsman Laurent Bourgnon was reported missing on Wednesday after failing to return from a diving trip in French Polynesia.

Denmark to finally get some summer heat
Denmark

Denmark to finally get some summer heat

Grey days, chilly winds and rain clouds have so far kept the Danish summer at bay, but forecasters promised on Thursday that the sun and warmer temperatures are just around the bend.

‘French public should support their taxi drivers’
France

‘French public should support their taxi drivers’

A taxi drivers’ union leader tells The Local why Thursday’s nationwide protests against Uber are justified and why the public should get behind them.

Charity wants recall of ‘cruelty to dolphins’ doll
Spain

Charity wants recall of ‘cruelty to dolphins’ doll

A Spanish animal rights charity is demanding that 'Nancy the dolphin trainer' doll be recalled from toyshop shelves, because it "promotes the exploitation of animals".

Spanish approval of USA has tripled in a decade
Spain

Spanish approval of USA has tripled in a decade

Nearly two-thirds of Spaniards said they had favourable opinions about the United States - the highest level in 15 years. But Spaniards also expressed the least amount of confidence in President Barack Obama among west European countries, according to a new poll.

French hold positive view of United States
France

French hold positive view of United States

Just as France was rocked by revelations the US snooped on its presidents a new survey has revealed that the majority of the French public believe that the US does respect freedoms and most have a positive view of the country.

‘A 17-year-old nerd could hack the Bundestag’
Germany

‘A 17-year-old nerd could hack the Bundestag’

IT experts warned this week that the website of the Bundestag (German parliament) is a potential “bridgehead” for hackers to gain access to MPs' data.

Vienna gears up for mega open-air party
Austria

Vienna gears up for mega open-air party

Vienna’s annual Donauinselfest - Europe’s biggest open-air free music festival - takes place at the Donauinsel this weekend. It’s expected to attract a total of around 3.1 million visitors over three days.

French theme park blast leaves 14 kids injured
France

French theme park blast leaves 14 kids injured

An explosion at a theme park to the north of Paris on Wednesday left 14 children and four adults injured.

Tourists pitch tents in Venice historical centre
Italy

Tourists pitch tents in Venice historical centre

Tourists have been spotted pitching tents in Venice’s historical centre. It's just the latest incident of visitors behaving badly in Italy.

Buzz over Swedish sex toy tester job advert
Sweden

Buzz over Swedish sex toy tester job advert

UPDATED: A job advert for sex toy testers has been taken down from Sweden's Employment Service website (Arbetsförmedlingen), following concerns it might cause offence.

Anger over captain’s book dedication
Italy

Anger over captain’s book dedication

Francesco Schettino, ex-captain of the Costa Concordia, has dedicated his new book, Le Verità Sommerse (The Sunken Truths) to the families of the shipwreck's 32 victims.

placeholder image
Switzerland

World foreign investment ‘expected to rebound’

Global foreign direct investment is expected to rebound in 2015 after falling 16 percent last year due to a fragile world economy and political and military crises, the UN said on Wednesday.

Fresh bribery claims in Swedish jet scandal
Sweden

Fresh bribery claims in Swedish jet scandal

Swedish defence firm Saab paid around a billion kronor to shady middlemen as part of a controversial deal to sell fighter jets to South Africa, according to documents obtained by a Swedish tabloid.

Nazi-stolen painting fetches €2.7m at auction
Germany

Nazi-stolen painting fetches €2.7m at auction

On Wednesday the painting 'Two Riders on a Beach', looted by the Nazis in 1938, was sold at a London auction house for €2.7m shortly after being returned to the rightful owner.

Solar plane ‘could remain stuck in Japan for a year’
Switzerland

Solar plane ‘could remain stuck in Japan for a year’

A Swiss solar-powered plane attempting to fly around the world must cross the Pacific within a few weeks or it could remain stuck in Japan for a year, the project's co-founder said in an interview published on Thursday.

How the Reichstag was wrapped in plastic
Germany

How the Reichstag was wrapped in plastic

Twenty years ago, between the 17th and 24th June 1995 the renowned artist couple Christo and Jeanne-Claude unveiled their latest and most extravagant artwork - they had wrapped the Reichstag in plastic, at a cost of $4 million.

Electrolux boss denies plan to quit Sweden
Sweden

Electrolux boss denies plan to quit Sweden

Swedish appliance giant Electrolux has denied a report that its American chief executive Keith McLoughlin is resigning to reunite with his family in the US.

Anti-immigration party remains most popular
Switzerland

Anti-immigration party remains most popular

The right-wing Swiss People’s Party (SVP) remains the most popular political party in Switzerland, according to the latest polling figures released this week ahead of next autumn’s national elections.

Video footage of Graz car rampage shown
Austria

Video footage of Graz car rampage shown

Shocking video footage of the moment a “mentally unbalanced” man ploughed his car at high speed through a pedestrian shopping street in Graz has been broadcast on Austrian TV.

Franco-era secrets to remain secret, says govt
Spain

Franco-era secrets to remain secret, says govt

The Spanish government has blocked the declassification of archives dating from the Spanish Civil War and subsequent fascist dictatorship of Francisco Franco arguing that it is of low importance.

Berlin scolds Hungary on refugee rules breach
Germany

Berlin scolds Hungary on refugee rules breach

After Hungary announced that it would stop obeying EU rules on refugees, the country's ambassador came in for a stern talking-to from both the Foreign and Interior ministries in Berlin.

IN PICS: Is this Italy’s most violent sport?
Italy

IN PICS: Is this Italy’s most violent sport?

When it comes to history, soccer's classic derby matches are put in the shade by the Calcio Storico Fiorentino, a fixture that has been played in Florence since the 16th Century.

Austrian couple fined for outdoor sex in Croatia
Austria

Austrian couple fined for outdoor sex in Croatia

An Austrian couple have been fined €100 each for having noisy early-morning sex on the terrace of a bar in the popular Croatian tourist resort Rovinj.

Denmark shaken by grisly random murder
Denmark

Denmark shaken by grisly random murder

A 48-year-old teacher has openly admitted to murdering a random young Odense woman in her backyard because her felt “harassed” by her and others.

Assange urges France to take action against US
France

Assange urges France to take action against US

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange told French television Wednesday that the time had come for legal action over US snooping after leaked documents revealing Washington had spied on three French presidents sparked fresh outrage.

Holocaust: France backs $60m compensation
France

Holocaust: France backs $60m compensation

French MPs on Wednesday approved a landmark deal with the United States in which France agreed to pay $60 million in overall compensation to foreign nationals deported to Nazi death camps on French trains in World War II.

Italy public-sector wage freeze illegal: top court
Italy

Italy public-sector wage freeze illegal: top court

Italy's highest court on Wednesday ruled that a public-sector wage freeze in place since 2010 was illegal, but stopped short of ordering the government to compensate workers for raises they missed out on.

Spanish Riding School celebrates 450 years
Austria

Spanish Riding School celebrates 450 years

Vienna’s Spanish Riding School celebrates its 450th anniversary this week with gala performances on Heldenplatz - with Spain’s Infanta Elena attending as well as riders and horses of the Royal Andalusian Riding School in Jerez.

Bright outlook for Spain as growth forecast raised
Spain

Bright outlook for Spain as growth forecast raised

Spain's central bank on Wednesday raised its 2015 economic growth forecast for the country to 3.1 percent, strengthening the outlook for recovery in the eurozone's fourth biggest economy.

Barcelona to test ‘Back to the Future’ hoverboard
Spain

Barcelona to test ‘Back to the Future’ hoverboard

The future is here already - or at least the one imagined for Marty McFly - with the development of a real life hoverboard that will be tested in Barcelona this summer.

As it happened: Queen’s second day in Germany
Germany

As it happened: Queen’s second day in Germany

The Queen will spend the second day of her fifth state visit to Germany in the country's financial heart before heading back to Berlin for a very British garden party. Check back throughout the day for live updates.

Spain’s Telefonica sells Telecom Italia stake
Italy

Spain’s Telefonica sells Telecom Italia stake

Spanish telecom giant Telefonica said on Wednesday it had sold its 8.2 percent stake in Telecom Italia to French media group Vivendi, in a deal estimated to be worth more than a billion euros.

Greece scares consumers off spending
Germany

Greece scares consumers off spending

Consumer confidence in Germany is beginning to be dampened slightly by the uncertainty surrounding Greece, a poll found on Thursday.

Rasmussen’s ‘difficult’ coalition talks continue
Denmark

Rasmussen’s ‘difficult’ coalition talks continue

Presumed incoming PM Lars Løkke Rasmussen is still trying to make ends meet with the Danish People's Party while also facing pressure from Liberal Alliance.

Anti-refugee marchers hurl insults and bottles
Germany

Anti-refugee marchers hurl insults and bottles

One person was injured in fighting after demonstrators gathered outside a former hotel in Saxony for the third night in a row to demonstrate against its use as refugee accommodation.

More Malmö unrest as youth centre burns
Sweden

More Malmö unrest as youth centre burns

UPDATED: People in the troubled suburb of Kroksbäck in Malmö reported hearing explosions on Wednesday night, as emergency services discovered several cars and a community centre on fire.

Equestrian dies after being thrown from horse
Switzerland

Equestrian dies after being thrown from horse

A 56-year-old woman died after being thrown from a horse during a training exercise at a riding school in the canton of Vaud, police said on Wednesday.

Toilet bomb alert in Stockholm suburb
Sweden

Toilet bomb alert in Stockholm suburb

Police in the Swedish capital investigated a suspected explosive found in a public toilet in a quiet suburb on Wednesday night.

Five events to get you dancing this week
Sweden

Five events to get you dancing this week

Sweden's biggest music festival Bråvalla kicks off in Norrköping, south of Stockholm, with Calvin Harris and Muse among the big names on the bill and there are plenty more places to party across the country.