Geneva authorities reduce terror alert level
Switzerland

Geneva authorities reduce terror alert level

Geneva is returning to normal after authorities lowered the terror alert level raised earlier this month following intelligence about a specific threat in the canton.

Italy promises support to future Libyan premier
Italy

Italy promises support to future Libyan premier

The leader of a proposed new government in conflict-wracked Libya made his first visit to Europe on Monday, holding secret talks with Italy's Premier Matteo Renzi, who assured him of Rome's willingness to intervene in support of the fledgling national unity administration.

UK charity to award dog killed after Paris attacks
France

UK charity to award dog killed after Paris attacks

A French police dog killed in a security services raid after the Paris attacks is to receive a posthumous medal for gallantry from a British animal charity, it said Monday.

Wife of Bataclan shooter ‘proud’ and ‘happy’
France

Wife of Bataclan shooter ‘proud’ and ‘happy’

Investigators have uncovered shocking messages sent by the wife of one of the Paris shooters, in which she boasts of her "great life" in Iraq and says she is "proud" of her husband.

‘Extraordinary’ red skies wow Svalbard locals
Norway

‘Extraordinary’ red skies wow Svalbard locals

Midwinter usually brings nothing but darkness to the far northern Norwegian island of Svalbard, where the sun does not rise above the horizon in either December or January. But something special has happened this year.

Beaver death sparks fear over festive fireworks
Germany

Beaver death sparks fear over festive fireworks

Animal rights groups have aligned themselves with politicians calling for a curb on Germany's favourite – and loudest – New Year pastime.

VIDEO: Police filmed beating Paris mother
France

VIDEO: Police filmed beating Paris mother

Footage has emerged of several police officers violently beating a woman in the northern suburbs of Paris, just moments after they had tried to arrest her sons.

Spain’s Podemos rules out helping any party form new government
Spain

Spain’s Podemos rules out helping any party form new government

The head of Spain's far-left party Podemos, a potential kingmaker following an inconclusive general election, on Monday ruled out offering support to any party in forming a new government.

Swedes fear ‘worrying’ rise of super-gonorrhea
Sweden

Swedes fear ‘worrying’ rise of super-gonorrhea

Swedish doctors fear that ‘super-gonorrhea’, untreatable by conventional antibiotics, is on the rise after seeing the number of cases of the sexually transmitted disease more than double in six years.

Qatari royal treated for broken leg in Zurich
Switzerland

Qatari royal treated for broken leg in Zurich

The former emir of Qatar was flown to Zurich with his entourage in a convoy of planes at the weekend for treatment for a broken leg.

Nepal’s Sherpas rebuild Norway mountain paths
Norway

Nepal’s Sherpas rebuild Norway mountain paths

A group of Sherpas have spent several years reconstructing Norway's crumbling mountain paths after being recruited for their endurance and skill at high-altitude work as well as ability to carry heavy loads.

Swiss put their hope in family and friends
Switzerland

Swiss put their hope in family and friends

Happiness at home, health and good personal relationships top the list of the things the Swiss wish for themselves in 2016.

Serial rapist caught after eight-year hunt
Germany

Serial rapist caught after eight-year hunt

A man who committed several rapes in 2008 has finally been caught, after his DNA was found at the scene of a burglary on the other side of the country.

‘Cannabis’ ice cream whipped up in Italy
Italy

‘Cannabis’ ice cream whipped up in Italy

An ice cream parlour in northern Italy has whipped up an ice cream flavoured with hemp seed as a tribute to the reggae singer Bob Marley.

Norway ski pioneer Stein Eriksen dies at 88
Norway

Norway ski pioneer Stein Eriksen dies at 88

Stein Eriksen, a Norwegian credited as the founder of modern skiing, died on Sunday at his home in Utah, the ski resort he was long associated with said. He was 88.

Twelve of the best festivals in Spain
Spain

Twelve of the best festivals in Spain

If there is one thing the Spanish know how to do it is throw a great party. Here is a list of our favourites for 2016.

Danish rail firm may hike fare for bridge to Sweden
Denmark

Danish rail firm may hike fare for bridge to Sweden

Denmark's national rail operator warns it may soon slap a surcharge on tickets for travel across the Øresund Bridge to Sweden, predicting ID checks will cost it a million Danish kroner ($150,000) a day.

Car clampdown as smog smothers Italy
Italy

Car clampdown as smog smothers Italy

UPATED: Cars were partially banished from the streets of Milan and Rome on Monday as Italy battled a buildup of health-threatening pollution caused by freakishly dry and warm winter weather.

Women’s football team hit by mafia-style threats
Italy

Women’s football team hit by mafia-style threats

Giovanni Malagò, the president of Italy’s National Olympic Committee (Coni), has called for an Italian women’s football team to re-form after it was disbanded following a series of mafia-style threats.

Murder investigators seek help from Interpol
Switzerland

Murder investigators seek help from Interpol

Police investigating the suspected murder of four people in the canton of Aargau one week ago have involved international forces in the search for leads.

Sweden’s Spotify reels in new Beatles music fans
Sweden

Sweden’s Spotify reels in new Beatles music fans

After streaming firms including Spotify reached a deal to include tracks by The Beatles for the first time, 'Come Together' has become the most-played track by fans new and old.

‘Kids as young as ten are considering suicide’
Germany

‘Kids as young as ten are considering suicide’

The TelefonSeelsorge (Telephone Pastors) counsel millions of desperate callers each year. In 2016 the service will be 60 years old.

Danish rail firm may hike fare for bridge to Sweden
Sweden

Danish rail firm may hike fare for bridge to Sweden

Denmark’s national rail operator has warned that it may hike ticket prices for those travelling across the iconic Öresund Bridge to Sweden, predicting ID checks will cost it a million Danish kroner ($150,000) a day.

Summer break rush as snow coats Sweden
Sweden

Summer break rush as snow coats Sweden

Swedes are rushing to book their summer holidays already, as much of the country grapples with snow and ice.

Tourist bitten by shark during Christmas swim off Gran Canaria
Spain

Tourist bitten by shark during Christmas swim off Gran Canaria

Roast turkey is the traditional fare for many at Christmas but one unsuspecting tourist discovered that she was on the menu when she went for a dip off a beach in Gran Canaria.

2015: the year Merkel became Europe’s boss
Germany

2015: the year Merkel became Europe’s boss

In a year of crises for Europe Angela Merkel emerged as the continent's de facto leader, drawing more praise and fire than ever.

Masturbation verb tops 2015 Swedish word list
Sweden

Masturbation verb tops 2015 Swedish word list

A unique word for female masturbation (‘klittra’), a plethora of news vocabulary, and tech verbs such as ‘svajpa’, ‘svischa’, and ‘vejpa’, dominate Sweden's official list of new words for 2015.

Man dies after condom machine explosion
Germany

Man dies after condom machine explosion

A young man from western Germany died in tragic circumstances on Christmas Eve after blowing up a condom machine with a homemade bomb.

Two detained for flying drone over Vatican
Italy

Two detained for flying drone over Vatican

Two Israeli citizens have been detained by police in Rome for allegedly flying a drone over the Vatican.

Balmy winter hits French ski workers in wallet
France

Balmy winter hits French ski workers in wallet

The spring-like temperatures that have disappointed many skiers hoping to find a blanket of fresh powder in the French Alps is having a far more painful impact on resort workers: unemployment.

Swiss army chief warns of terrorism and unrest
Switzerland

Swiss army chief warns of terrorism and unrest

The head of the Swiss Armed Forces, André Blattmann, has warned against cutbacks in the military amid a heightened threat of terrorism around the world.

800-year-old shipwreck found off Salento coast
Italy

800-year-old shipwreck found off Salento coast

The wreck of a ship, thought to date back to either the 12th or 13th century, has been found off the coast of Salento.

Star Wars hero was asked to ‘say something’ in Spanish. So he did
Spain

Star Wars hero was asked to ‘say something’ in Spanish. So he did

Mark Hamill who reprises his role of Luke Skywalker in the latest Star Wars epic thrilled a fan with his sardonic reply.

Italian chauffeur finds €43k…and gives it back
Italy

Italian chauffeur finds €43k…and gives it back

Some people who stumble across a large wad of cash might think all their Christmases have come at once. But not honest Luigi Tiedi, from the Marche region, who didn’t think twice about returning the €43,000 he found just before Christmas.

Syria strikes like Paris attacks says German MP
Germany

Syria strikes like Paris attacks says German MP

Air strikes that cause collateral damage against civilians in Syria are a "no lesser crime" than the Paris attacks, a leader from Germany's far-left Die Linke (Left Party) said on Monday.

Year in review: France’s best moments of 2015
France

Year in review: France’s best moments of 2015

2015 was undoubtedly a difficult year for France. But there were many positives to be found - The Local looks back at some of the country's successes and best moments from the year.

2015 is the year that France will want to forget
France

2015 is the year that France will want to forget

It wasn't just the two terror attacks that bookended the year 2015, there were many other reasons France will be happy to put this year behind it, writes The Local France's Editor Ben McPartland.

Guardian angels work overtime in car crash
Austria

Guardian angels work overtime in car crash

A 45-year-old man lost control of his car, and crashed into an oncoming vehicle driven by a teenager. Fortunately, no one was seriously injured, but both cars were demolished.

Danes turn to GPS to track dementia patients
Denmark

Danes turn to GPS to track dementia patients

Most Danish municipalities are now fitting dementia patients with GPS tracking systems, a new survey shows.

Denmark wrong to deport abused woman: UN
Denmark

Denmark wrong to deport abused woman: UN

The UN's Commission on the Status of Women has overruled a 2013 decision by the Danish Refugee Appeals Board to deport a Pakistani woman who was a victim of sexual assault.

December enters record books as warmest ever
Switzerland

December enters record books as warmest ever

Switzerland has had its warmest December since records began in 1868, according to meteorologists, with snow in short supply over Christmas.

Separatists in deadlock as latest bid to form Catalan government fails
Spain

Separatists in deadlock as latest bid to form Catalan government fails

With a deadline is looming to elect a leader and form a government the separatist parties are in deadlock.

Nazi hunting legend back in focus on silver screen
Germany

Nazi hunting legend back in focus on silver screen

With two new films, German cinema has rediscovered the country's fiercest Nazi hunter, former prosecutor Fritz Bauer, honouring a man who fought against post-war amnesia about the Holocaust.

Expelled French journo takes aim at China
France

Expelled French journo takes aim at China

A French reporter about to be thrown out of China after being accused of supporting terrorism said Monday the Chinese authorities were trying to "muzzle the international press".

Bavaria demands control of own borders
Germany

Bavaria demands control of own borders

The conservative state government in Bavaria has called on Berlin to allow the Free State's own police to secure its border with Austria, saying that federal officers are overwhelmed.

Slippery roads greet Swedes back at work
Sweden

Slippery roads greet Swedes back at work

UPDATED: Black ice, flooding, snow and ice have welcomed workers heading back to their desks in Sweden after the festive break.

Milan smog: traffic limited for three days
Italy

Milan smog: traffic limited for three days

A three-day limit on daytime travel in Milan gets underway on Monday as the northern Italian city tries to bring air pollution down from dangerous levels.

‘In Sweden, everyone follows the system’
Sweden

‘In Sweden, everyone follows the system’

Prashant Jain, 29, moved to Sweden to work at an asset management company. He tells The Local how working in investments gives you a global outlook, and how Swedes don't buck the system.

Is Sweden’s Christmas Donald Duck fest over?
Sweden

Is Sweden’s Christmas Donald Duck fest over?

It’s as much a part of the Swedish Christmas as pickled herring, tipsy singing, and a less than jovial Santa, but after this year pulling in the lowest viewing figures for five years, is the annual showing of Donald Duck and pals now on the way out?