GE announces plans to slash 1,300 Swiss jobs
Switzerland

GE announces plans to slash 1,300 Swiss jobs

General Electric on Wednesday announced plans to shed 1,300 jobs in Switzerland as part of an overall plan to cut 6,500 positions across Europe after acquiring the energy business of French company Alstom for $10.3 billion last year.

Younger, scruffier, and with a babe in arms: This is Spain’s new elite
Spain

Younger, scruffier, and with a babe in arms: This is Spain’s new elite

Spain's parliament was filled with new faces - and the star of the show was still in nappies.

Trial delayed for Danish mutilation suspect
Denmark

Trial delayed for Danish mutilation suspect

The trial in South Africa of a Danish man accused of mutilating women and storing pieces of their genitals in his freezer was deferred on Wednesday until next month, the prosecution said.

Third skier dies after French Alps avalanche
France

Third skier dies after French Alps avalanche

A second teenage pupil of a school in Lyon has been confirmed dead after an avalanche in the French Alps, which also killed a Ukrainian skier.

Wanted: 300 Spanish chefs sought for Italian restaurants… in Britain
Spain

Wanted: 300 Spanish chefs sought for Italian restaurants… in Britain

An offer Spaniards can't resist? British restaurant chain Bella Italia is on the hunt for fresh talent for its Italian kitchens - but from Spain.

Swedes struggle to stay on feet in icy weather
Sweden

Swedes struggle to stay on feet in icy weather

A video of Swedes struggling to cope with the cold snap was making the rounds online on Wednesday, as temperatures were expected to drop to -20C in the capital by the weekend.

Bronze Age village found near ancient Roman city
Italy

Bronze Age village found near ancient Roman city

A 3,500-year-old settlement has been unearthed near an ancient Roman city in northeast Italy.

Bar bans refugees after ‘harassment’
Austria

Bar bans refugees after ‘harassment’

A bar owner in Austria has banned "all asylum seekers" after alleged attacks on guests, sparking strong criticism from human rights groups.

Calais refugees worry as bulldozers roll in to camp
France

Calais refugees worry as bulldozers roll in to camp

Authorities in the northern French port of Calais were struggling to move hundreds of migrants into refitted shipping containers on Wednesday ahead of plans to bulldoze part of the notorious "Jungle" camp.

Neo-Nazis face trial over plot to bomb refugees
Germany

Neo-Nazis face trial over plot to bomb refugees

Federal prosecutors said on Wednesday that they will bring charges against four neo-Nazis who planned to attack "Salafists and asylum-seekers" with improvised bombs.

Man robbed of money to visit sick mum finds kindness from strangers
Spain

Man robbed of money to visit sick mum finds kindness from strangers

When a Barcelona taxi driver was stabbed and the money he had saved up to visit his sick mother in Pakistan stolen, strangers stepped in and came to the rescue.

Merkel refugee welcome ‘unconstitutional’: judge
Germany

Merkel refugee welcome ‘unconstitutional’: judge

Chancellor Angela Merkel overstepped her constitutional powers by letting over a million refugees into the country, one of Germany’s most senior former judges has said.

France rejects criticism of ‘ethnic profiling’
France

France rejects criticism of ‘ethnic profiling’

The French government on Wednesday rejected criticism from Europe's top human rights watchdog that it was "ethnically profiling" suspects as part of the state of emergency imposed after the November attacks in Paris.

Sweden asks permission to question Assange
Sweden

Sweden asks permission to question Assange

Sweden's state prosecutor's office said on Wednesday that it had formally asked Ecuador for permission to interrogate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange over a rape allegation.

Brrrrr! Winter is finally coming to France
France

Brrrrr! Winter is finally coming to France

After a mild winter so far the mercury is starting to dip in France and the real winter spell should arrive by the weekend. And Paris might even get some snow.

Italy marine given more time in shooting case
Italy

Italy marine given more time in shooting case

India's top court on Wednesday granted an Italian marine detained over the killing of two fishermen another three months at home to recover from a medical condition, amid a diplomatic row over the case.

Denmark extends border controls with Germany
Denmark

Denmark extends border controls with Germany

The government on Wednesday extended border checks through February 3 but warned the measures will stay in place “until it is no longer necessary”.

Italy police count on DNA to crack Florence murder
Italy

Italy police count on DNA to crack Florence murder

Italian police are hoping DNA traces recovered from the Florence flat of slain American Ashley Olsen will help them find a killer she reportedly had sex with before her death.

Paris in new crackdown on illegal Airbnb flats
France

Paris in new crackdown on illegal Airbnb flats

Paris authorities have raided apartments across the capital in an effort to get tough on Airbnb hosts who aren't playing by the rules.

Norway firm quits $1.5bn Nepal hydropower plan
Norway

Norway firm quits $1.5bn Nepal hydropower plan

Norwegian company Statkraft has said it is dropping plans to build a $1.5 billion hydropower plant in Nepal, citing bureaucratic hurdles and political instability in the troubled Himalayan nation.

25-year-old discovers she was switched at birth
Austria

25-year-old discovers she was switched at birth

After donating blood, a 25-year-old Austrian has discovered that the woman she grew up believing was her mother is not actually related to her, and that she must have been switched at birth with another baby.

‘Ditching kippah puts our future in France in doubt’
France

‘Ditching kippah puts our future in France in doubt’

Jewish leaders in France and members of the community insist they should not give in to fear and stop wearing the kippah after a machete attack on a teacher.

Spanish police smash ‘false bottom’ pleasure boat drug smuggling ring
Spain

Spanish police smash ‘false bottom’ pleasure boat drug smuggling ring

Smugglers used false bottoms to transport hashish from Morocco to Spain but in the end they weren't able to elude Spanish police.

Woman dies during abortion in Naples
Italy

Woman dies during abortion in Naples

Italy’s Health Ministry said on Tuesday it is investigating the death of a 19-year-old during an abortion at a hospital in Naples.

Swedish cat owner finds lost pet a decade later
Sweden

Swedish cat owner finds lost pet a decade later

Introducing Sweden's most independent cat. Sessan, who went missing in 2004, has just been found by her owner, after forging a new life by a recycling station.

German war graves are being desecrated on TV
Germany

German war graves are being desecrated on TV

Military historian Robin Schäfer explains why he and thousands of German families are horrified by a British TV show promoting the looting of German war graves - exactly as happened to his own great-uncle's remains.

France bans three ‘radical’ Islamic groups
France

France bans three ‘radical’ Islamic groups

T"here is no place in the French Republic for groups which provoke hate", the government has said.

Huge gulf in crime rates among migrant groups
Germany

Huge gulf in crime rates among migrant groups

Migrants arriving in Germany from North Africa are disproportionately likely to commit crime, police figures show - but deporting them isn’t always straightforward.

Fifa fires Blatter associate Jérôme Valcke
Switzerland

Fifa fires Blatter associate Jérôme Valcke

Fifa has fired secretary general Jérôme Valcke, who is under investigation for misconduct, world football's governing body said on Wednesday.

Norway to send refugees back to Russia – by bike
Norway

Norway to send refugees back to Russia – by bike

Thousands of refugees and migrants who crossed into Norway from Russia by bicycle will be sent back the same way they came, immigration authorities say.

Is Spain’s leftist Podemos party being secretly funded by Iran?
Spain

Is Spain’s leftist Podemos party being secretly funded by Iran?

Police are investigating allegations that the radical left party has been illegally financed with money from the Iranian regime.

Nuts! Swedish police probe weird cashew haul
Sweden

Nuts! Swedish police probe weird cashew haul

Swedish police were faced with a tough nut to crack on Wednesday after officers pulled over a car with two men – only to find 250 kilo of presumably stolen cashew nuts inside.

Warm winter brings early almond blossom and climate change alarm
Spain

Warm winter brings early almond blossom and climate change alarm

Pretty as they may be, experts warn that higher temperatures in Spain this winter have caused the almond trees to bloom too soon.

Karate club kicked for using murder victims in adverts
Sweden

Karate club kicked for using murder victims in adverts

A new sports club which listed murdered Swedish women on its flyers and suggested that the victims might have survived if they'd learned karate skills is facing a backlash.

Ruling party members slam migrant searches
Denmark

Ruling party members slam migrant searches

Ten Venstre members warned that their party leadership's plans to seize refugee valuables violate "proper policy and humanity" and damage Denmark's international reputation.

Military won’t change nude bathing policy
Norway

Military won’t change nude bathing policy

The Norwegian Armed Forces (Forsvaret) will not make any formal rule changes despite a female soldier’s complaint that she was made to bathe nude alongside 30 male soldiers.

Former U20 football star caught stealing gold
Switzerland

Former U20 football star caught stealing gold

A former player for Switzerland’s under-20 football team was caught stealing a gold ingot worth 9,000 francs ($8,950) from a precious metals shop in the canton of Aargau, according to media reports on Wednesday.

Boy with toy gun sparks panic in Verona park
Italy

Boy with toy gun sparks panic in Verona park

A boy wearing a hooded top and playing with a toy gun in a public garden in Verona sent jitters among those living in the area.

Man admits shooting 11-year-old on New Year
Germany

Man admits shooting 11-year-old on New Year

A man has admitted to shooting and killing an 11-year-old girl out of “anger” as she was celebrating New Year with friends in northern Bavaria.

Italy party pushes to cut ‘tampon tax’
Italy

Italy party pushes to cut ‘tampon tax’

Menstruation in Italy doesn't come cheap. In fact, Italian women pay 22 percent in tax on every box of tampons they buy.

Merkel ally calls for 1,000 deportations daily
Germany

Merkel ally calls for 1,000 deportations daily

Germany's federal states should immediately deport the roughly 1,000 asylum seekers whose applications are rejected each day, a key figure in Chancellor Angela Merkel's party said on Wednesday.

Danish women report harassment by refugees
Denmark

Danish women report harassment by refugees

Women in at least three Danish cities have reported being harassed by refugees who they say are making them feel very uncomfortable when out at night.

Boom in demand for self-defence weapons
Austria

Boom in demand for self-defence weapons

The number of weapons permits issued in Vienna and Styria for pistols and revolvers has multiplied in recent months, a trend which is seen to have taken off after the terror attacks in Paris and in the wake of the increasing number of migrants and refugees entering Austria.

Eurotunnel floods land in bid to keep refugees out
France

Eurotunnel floods land in bid to keep refugees out

Eurotunnel has opened the floodgates to create a water barrier around the access to its train terminal in a bid to keep refugees out.

Spain’s divided parliament convenes at time of political turmoil
Spain

Spain’s divided parliament convenes at time of political turmoil

Spain's parliament will today be filled with new faces as lawmakers take their seats following an inconclusive general election.

Ten German dead in Istanbul terror attack
Germany

Ten German dead in Istanbul terror attack

UPDATED: The German government says that ten Germans have fallen victim to the terrorist attack in Istanbul on Tuesday, after two succumbed to their injuries in hospital.

New Catalan leader takes office but won’t swear loyalty to King or Spain
Spain

New Catalan leader takes office but won’t swear loyalty to King or Spain

Carles Puigdemont has been tasked with leading the northeastern region to independence from Spain within 18 months.

Swedish PM: ‘Stop arguing, start building’
Sweden

Swedish PM: ‘Stop arguing, start building’

UPDATED: Sweden's political parties need to pull together to tackle the nation's housing crisis, rather than keep rowing about it, the country's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has said.

Bern rejects ban on ‘speculative’ food trading
Switzerland

Bern rejects ban on ‘speculative’ food trading

The federal government on Tuesday launched its campaign against an initiative aimed at banning speculation in the trading of basic food commodities in Switzerland.

Lego changes policy following Ai Weiwei row
Denmark

Lego changes policy following Ai Weiwei row

Toymaker Lego will no longer ask what its bricks will be used for when making bulk sales, the company said, after facing criticism for refusing to sell to controversial Chinese artist Ai Weiwei.

Probe sheds light on Italy childbirth deaths
Italy

Probe sheds light on Italy childbirth deaths

Italy's health ministry said on Tuesday that probes into a spate of women dying in childbirth had uncovered issues in the handling of three fatal cases, but stopped short of suggesting lives might have been saved.

Criminal complaints in Cologne rise to 561
Germany

Criminal complaints in Cologne rise to 561

Authorities in the German city of Cologne said Tuesday that the number of criminal complaints arising from a rash of violence targeting women on New Year's Eve had risen to 561.

Paris attackers had three safehouses in Belgium
France

Paris attackers had three safehouses in Belgium

Belgian police have found three safehouses that were used by suspects before they carried out the terror attacks in Paris, prosecutors said on Wednesday.

Churchill’s yacht goes on sale in France for €2m
France

Churchill’s yacht goes on sale in France for €2m

For just €2 million you can become the proud owner of the yacht of iconic British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, which has gone on sale in France.

China stops access to Swedish campaigner
Sweden

China stops access to Swedish campaigner

UPDATED: Chinese authorities are holding a Swedish citizen on suspicion of endangering national security, Beijing confirmed on Wednesday, as it appeared he had been caught up in a crackdown on human rights lawyers.

Israel ‘bans’ Swedish visit over deaths row
Sweden

Israel ‘bans’ Swedish visit over deaths row

UPDATED: Israel has said Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström is no longer welcome in the country after she called for investigations into the killing of Palestinians by the Israeli army in recent months.

France ‘risks democracy’ with state of emergency
France

France ‘risks democracy’ with state of emergency

A European human rights chief believes France's ongoing state of emergency could represent a threat to democracy.

Nine ‘normal’ chats that sound totally odd to Swedish people
Sweden

Nine ‘normal’ chats that sound totally odd to Swedish people

If you're a foreigner who's got used to living life "the Swedish way", or a Swede who's moved abroad, common conversations with locals in other countries can end up feeling rather strange.