Treed tower set to rise west of Lausanne
Switzerland

Treed tower set to rise west of Lausanne

A design for a “forested” 35-storey apartment and office tower covered with trees and shrubbery on terraces at every level has been selected for a suburb west of Lausanne, following a competition.

Tetra Pak plans closure of only Swiss plant
Switzerland

Tetra Pak plans closure of only Swiss plant

Packaging giant Tetra Pak is planning to close its only production plant in Switzerland next year, which would result in the loss of 123 jobs.

Rome’s Trevi Fountain springs back to life
Italy

Rome’s Trevi Fountain springs back to life

Hundreds of tourists converged on the Trevi Fountain in Rome on Tuesday evening to witness it gush once again with water after a €2 million makeover paid for by the fashion house, Fendi.

Paris to ban cars when pollution levels peak
France

Paris to ban cars when pollution levels peak

Paris is set to introduce cuts to traffic when pollution levels spike, after the ecology minister conceded to a long-running disagreement with the mayor of Paris.

Sweden’s H&M signs pledge for textile workers
Sweden

Sweden’s H&M signs pledge for textile workers

Swedish retail giant H&M on Tuesday signed an agreement promising better labour rights for 1.6 million garment workers at its suppliers' factories.

Merkel announces hard- fought refugee deal
Germany

Merkel announces hard- fought refugee deal

Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday that she had wrangled her governing coalition into consensus over a new plan to hold refugees at EU borders before distributing them around the Union.

Swedish pools ban parents’ smartphones
Sweden

Swedish pools ban parents’ smartphones

A rising number of public swimming pools across Sweden are launching blanket bans on smartphones and tablets in a bid to make inattentive parents help protect their children from drowning accidents.

How to love November in Sweden (no, seriously!)
Sweden

How to love November in Sweden (no, seriously!)

We asked for your top tips to survive Sweden's short days and increasingly chilly weather in November. What else should we add to the list?

Austria moves to tighten asylum rules
Austria

Austria moves to tighten asylum rules

Austria's government, facing a record influx of refugees and migrants as well as a surge in support for the anti-immigration far-right, plans to tighten its asylum rules.

Telenor ‘worried’ by Vimpelcom $900m fund
Norway

Telenor ‘worried’ by Vimpelcom $900m fund

Norwegian mobile giant Telenor has expressed “serious concerns” after Russia’s Vimpelcom, in which its 33 percent stake, announced it was putting $900m aside for fines from an ongoing corruption probe.

Osborne woos German firms with ‘shared values’
Germany

Osborne woos German firms with ‘shared values’

Britain continued its charm offensive in Berlin on Tuesday, as Chancellor George Osborne told business leaders that the two countries' interests in EU reform are aligned.

Basque separatists submit bill for the right to decide region’s ‘future’
Spain

Basque separatists submit bill for the right to decide region’s ‘future’

A Basque separatist coalition has submitted a bill to the local parliament aimed at allowing citizens to decide on the "future" of the northern Spanish region, which could include independence.

Copenhagen may cut ties with Muslim group
Denmark

Copenhagen may cut ties with Muslim group

The City of Copenhagen has given the Islamic Society in Denmark (Det Islamisk Trossamfund) a 30-day deadline to condemn controversial statements made by some of the society’s members.

Cheating Swedes fake children’s sick leave
Sweden

Cheating Swedes fake children’s sick leave

More and more parents are being caught cheating the Swedish benefits system, which allows them to get paid for looking after sick children, with one even spotted on a booze cruise while claiming payments.

Keen Italians face uphill struggle to learn English
Italy

Keen Italians face uphill struggle to learn English

Italians have long been lambasted for their English language skills, but that hasn't stopped their desire to learn, even more so today, as The Local discovered.

Woman bursts into flames in German park
Germany

Woman bursts into flames in German park

Mystery and tragedy went hand-in-hand in Flensburg, northern Germany on Monday evening, when passersby noticed a woman sitting on a bench suddenly burst into flames.

Kebab festival idea to rile far-right French mayor
France

Kebab festival idea to rile far-right French mayor

A town in France could host an international kebab festival just to spite the far right mayor after he claimed there were too many immigrants in the town, and that he didn't want it to become the "kebab capital".

France’s Michelin to close Italy factory
Italy

France’s Michelin to close Italy factory

French Tyre maker Michelin said on Tuesday it was planning to close three production sites in Europe within three years, including one site in Italy.

Frenchman turns mum’s tomb into a picnic table
France

Frenchman turns mum’s tomb into a picnic table

A Frenchman has found a novel way of mourning his mother, by creating a picnic table out of her tomb, where he now goes to enjoy a glass of wine, a bite to eat and a good old chat.

Blanc calls on PSG to be brave against Madrid
France

Blanc calls on PSG to be brave against Madrid

Paris Saint-Germain coach Laurent Blanc has called on his players to have the courage to impose their game on Real Madrid when the two sides meet in the Spanish capital on Tuesday.

Marquez hopes to leave spat with MotoGP rival Rossi behind him
Spain

Marquez hopes to leave spat with MotoGP rival Rossi behind him

Defending MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez has said he hopes his spat with championship leader Valentino Rossi doesn't spoil a tense title decider in the Valencia Grand Prix on Sunday.

Four ways that Danes are socializers, not socialists
Denmark

Four ways that Danes are socializers, not socialists

American author Jessica Alexander has seen US interest in Denmark spike in recent weeks, but she wonders if more of her countrymen would be inspired by Danes if they focused on their social traits rather than their 'socialist' label.

Three jihadists arrested in Madrid planning terror attacks in Spain
Spain

Three jihadists arrested in Madrid planning terror attacks in Spain

Spanish authorities said on Tuesday they had arrested three Moroccans suspected of links to the Isis jihadist group, who were aiming to carry out terror acts in Spain.

Germany slips out of global top ten in English
Germany

Germany slips out of global top ten in English

Germany has dropped out of the top ten in an annual study of English proficiency levels worldwide despite improving its performance, a study published on Tuesday showed.

UBS third-quarter earnings almost triple
Switzerland

UBS third-quarter earnings almost triple

Swiss banking giant UBS said on Tuesday that its third quarter net profit nearly tripled, beating analyst expectations, even as it acknowledged it too had been questioned over a Fifa corruption scandal.

Danes no longer world’s best English speakers
Denmark

Danes no longer world’s best English speakers

Danes have been knocked off their perch as the world’s best non-native English speakers by the Swedes and the Dutch.

Hugh Grant plans to tear down new Swedish home
Sweden

Hugh Grant plans to tear down new Swedish home

What's the first thing you do after snapping up a luxury six million kronor ($704,000) villa in Sweden, with sea views, two kitchens and a fireplace? If you're Hugh Grant: you raze it to the ground.

Yamaha refutes claims Rossi ‘kicked’ Marquez
Italy

Yamaha refutes claims Rossi ‘kicked’ Marquez

Yamaha on Tuesday hit back at rivals Honda for claiming Italian star Valentino Rossi kicked Marc Marquez off his bike during the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Swedes regain crown as top English speakers
Sweden

Swedes regain crown as top English speakers

Swedish people are the best non-native English speakers in the world, according to the largest global ranking of countries by English language skills, which placed the Nordic nation third in 2014.

Switzerland falls behind in English skills: study
Switzerland

Switzerland falls behind in English skills: study

Switzerland continues to fall behind other countries in the world for English proficiency, according to a new study of 70 nations by Education First (EF), an international language training company.

Four drown as flash floods sweep through Spanish retirement home
Spain

Four drown as flash floods sweep through Spanish retirement home

Four pensioners drowned on Tuesday when a river burst its banks and flooded their retirement home in northeastern Spain, officials said.

France ranked ‘worst in EU’ at learning English
France

France ranked ‘worst in EU’ at learning English

France has performed woefully in a worldwide English language ranking, finishing dead last in the EU and only slightly ahead of Turkey and Azerbaijan.

Vienna zoo rolls out partial ‘selfie stick’ ban
Austria

Vienna zoo rolls out partial ‘selfie stick’ ban

After a series of "minor incidents" involving zoo visitors and animals, Vienna’s Schönbrunn Zoo has banned the use of selfie sticks for taking photos with smartphones at some of its enclosures.

Frenchman fights to keep his ‘placid’ garden lion
France

Frenchman fights to keep his ‘placid’ garden lion

UPDATED: A Frenchman has been arrested after threatening to commit suicide if police confiscated the 14-month-old lion he was keeping in his garden.

Plea for French girl Lila, ‘taken by jihadist dad’
France

Plea for French girl Lila, ‘taken by jihadist dad’

A Frenchwoman has issued a plea for help to bring home her three-year-old daughter, whom she says was "abducted" by her jihadist husband who has left for Syria.

Climbing a tree is no picnic for this adorable family of Spanish bears
Spain

Climbing a tree is no picnic for this adorable family of Spanish bears

A family of bears has been captured on film trying – and failing – to climb a tree in the Spanish Pyrenees.

Spanish unemployment figures rise again as seasonal contracts end
Spain

Spanish unemployment figures rise again as seasonal contracts end

Spain's jobless total rose for a third straight month in October to 4.18 million, the employment ministry said on Tuesday.

Policeman compensated in passive smoking case
Austria

Policeman compensated in passive smoking case

A police officer who said he was forced to take early retirement due to poor health after being subjected to years of passive smoking at work has received just €7,400 in compensation.

People smugglers: UK and France to join forces
France

People smugglers: UK and France to join forces

France and Britain are to step up joint efforts to tackle people smuggling networks, which will see more British police stationed over on the French side of the English Channel.

Italy mulls ‘love rooms’ for prison inmates
Italy

Italy mulls ‘love rooms’ for prison inmates

The Italian parliament will on Wednesday begin debating a bill aimed at enshrining the legal rights of prisoners to have sex in jails, a move which one opposition party has said will "turn jails into brothels".

Danish Skype founder introduces robot delivery
Denmark

Danish Skype founder introduces robot delivery

The founders of Skype are preparing to unleash an army of delivery robots onto the world, with a Danish debut expected in 2017.

‘I don’t think anybody wants treaty change now’
Sweden

‘I don’t think anybody wants treaty change now’

The refugee crisis and Brexit were top of the agenda when Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven held talks with his UK counterpart David Cameron on an official visit to London.

Fact: Salmon sushi is a Norwegian invention
Norway

Fact: Salmon sushi is a Norwegian invention

Do you like Salmon sushi and sashimi? Then you should thank the Norwegians, who not only dreamt up the dish but also got the Japanese to eat it.

Norway ethics body backs IVF for legal males
Norway

Norway ethics body backs IVF for legal males

A Norwegian scientific ethics body has backed government plans to allow those who change legal gender from female to male to retain their ovaries and have children.

UBS also questioned in Fifa scandal probe
Switzerland

UBS also questioned in Fifa scandal probe

Swiss banking giant UBS said Tuesday that it too had been questioned over links with Fifa, after Credit Suisse acknowledged last week it was being probed in the massive corruption scandal rocking football's Zurich-based governing body.

Open Democracy: study visit to Swedish Riksdag
Sweden

Open Democracy: study visit to Swedish Riksdag

On November 2, the Swedish Institute organized a study visit to Riksdag, the Swedish parliament. SI NFGL member Mariia Opanasenko writes about the experience.

Police raid DFB over 2006 bribery allegations
Germany

Police raid DFB over 2006 bribery allegations

Police have raided the offices of the German Football Federation (DFB) in connection with a €6.7 million payment to Fifa allegedly used to buy votes for the 2006 World Cup.

Swiss remain on top for financial secrecy: report
Switzerland

Swiss remain on top for financial secrecy: report

Despite changes in policy, Switzerland is the least financially transparent country in the world, the UK-based Tax Justice Network says in an annual report.

Ten must-see films at CPH:Dox 2015
Denmark

Ten must-see films at CPH:Dox 2015

Ahead of this year's CPH:DOX film festival, The Local's Allan Mutuku-Kortbæk guides readers through some of the films you won't want to miss.

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Sweden

Nov. 6: Exploring the intersections of fashion and film studies (Stockholm)

Migrants to receive guidelines for EU values
Austria

Migrants to receive guidelines for EU values

Refugees and migrants arriving in Austria will soon be given a folder as they cross the border, containing information about European fundamental rights and freedoms, and urged to comply with them.

Galicia town to take action against Google Translate over ‘clitoris’ gaffe
Spain

Galicia town to take action against Google Translate over ‘clitoris’ gaffe

A Galician town whose website ended up promoting a "clitoris festival" when translated by Google, is considering making an official complaint to the company.

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Sweden

Nov. 5: Welfare states, welfare regimes and international migration (Malmö)

Mathias Enard wins France’s top literary prize
France

Mathias Enard wins France’s top literary prize

Writer Mathias Enard won the Goncourt, France's top literary prize, on Tuesday in a race dominated by books about the West's love-hate relationship with Islam and the Arab world.

Refugee crisis: Merkel warns of war in Balkans
Germany

Refugee crisis: Merkel warns of war in Balkans

Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned that closing borders within Europe could lead to military conflict in the Balkans as she once again sought to defend her refugee policies on Monday.

British boy dies from allergic reaction in Italy
Italy

British boy dies from allergic reaction in Italy

A seven-year-old British schoolboy with a severe dairy allergy died in Italy after going into anaphylactic shock following a pasta lunch.

German medical company rejects blame for blinded Spanish patients
Spain

German medical company rejects blame for blinded Spanish patients

A German medical company has rejected claims its product cost 13 Spaniards their sight in one eye as the substance was also linked to medical mishaps in France.

VW shares suffer as scandal reaches Porsche
Germany

VW shares suffer as scandal reaches Porsche

Shares in Volkswagen tumbled on the Frankfurt stock exchange Tuesday amid new accusations in the ever-widening emissions cheating scandal, but the German auto giant adamantly denied the new charges.

Why family companies need free trade and TTIP

Why family companies need free trade and TTIP

Way up north by the Arctic Circle, a Swedish family has been making world-class windows for more than 30 years. Bullet proof, fire proof, sliding in all directions – they do it all. They just can’t export to the US – not without a free trade agreement.

Trevi Fountain opens after Fendi makeover
Italy

Trevi Fountain opens after Fendi makeover

Its elaborate Baroque facade now sparkles in the sun, scaffold-free: Rome's Trevi Fountain will gush its emerald waters once again on Tuesday after a clean-up funded by Italian fashion house Fendi.

Court shames France into action in Calais
France

Court shames France into action in Calais

The French government has been ordered by a court to improve conditions at the giant "New Jungle" migrant camp in Calais after NGOs called for immediate action over "serious human rights violations".

Sweden’s King to be bought up by Activision
Sweden

Sweden’s King to be bought up by Activision

Sweden-born startup King - which is behind the global hit Candy Crush - looks set to be bought by US gaming company Activision Blizzard for $5.9 billion (around 50 billion kronor).

France honours Danish terror victims

France honours Danish terror victims

The two civilian victims of February's terror attack in Copenhagen were given posthumous awards from France on Monday.

Teen jailed for €4 million online drug business
Germany

Teen jailed for €4 million online drug business

A German court jailed a young man on Monday who ran a multi-million-euro on-line drugs business and sold almost a tonne of illegal narcotics from his bedroom in his mother's flat.

The Italian ‘disrupting’ the startup scene
Italy

The Italian ‘disrupting’ the startup scene

Gianluca Petrelli's mystery shopper app, BeMyEye, has thrived since being launched just two years ago. He talks to The Local about what it takes to be successful in the challenging startup scene.

Crunch time for Roma, says Nainggolan
Italy

Crunch time for Roma, says Nainggolan

Roma midfielder Radja Nainggolan has warned anything less than a win against Bayer Leverkusen could prove fatal to the Serie A side's chances of ending a five-year wait to reach the Champions League last 16.

Norway duo’s rapper heist skit goes viral
Norway

Norway duo’s rapper heist skit goes viral

Two Norwegian comedians got Chicago’s fastest rapper and his sidekick to improvise a bank heist film on the spot, then used the recording for a film they acted out themselves back in Oslo. Amazingly, it works.

Roma protests continue after Malmö camp shuts
Sweden

Roma protests continue after Malmö camp shuts

UPDATED: Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has said hundreds of Roma migrants left without an overnight base after police cleared out a huge 'shanty town' in Malmö are not Sweden's responsibility.