News Snippets from the European Press

News Snippets from the European Press

Caption:  JOHNNY DEPP: Said to be interested in a castle near Turin Photo credit: CC/Harald Crichel

Italy: Castle-hunt Actor Johnny Depp, who now spends most of his time in Europe, is said to be considering the purchase of a €3.7 million mediaeval castle in Montalto Dora near Turin.  In the meantime, local mayor Renzo Galletto told the New York Post that he was not sure that Depp’s presence “would be right” for the small town.

Denmark: Assumed name The Jagger burger chain in Copenhagen is rg Mick Jagger’s attempts to prevent them from using his name for their 18 outlet.  The Danish media revealed that the chain is appealing against the EU’s Patents and Trademarks office ruling in favour of Musidor, which manages the rock band’s trademarks and names.

Deep down After almost three years, excavating the 18-kilometre Fehmarnbelt tunnel beneath the Baltic linking Denmark and Germany has been completed. “It was difficult,” Pedro da Silva Jorgensen, the project’s Technical Deputy Director said, as the subsoil between both countries was a “complex mix” that included 70-ton granite blocks.

Norway: Damped down Bonfires, campfires and barbecues in or near forests and other isolated areas have been banned between April 15 and September 17 as the authorities take steps to prevent wildfires. Norway’s Fire Service also stressed that fires could still be lit out-of-doors if there was no danger of a blaze spreading to adjoining land or woodland.

Full Stop Rail passengers faced delays throughout the country on April 15 after trains on all lines ground to a halt in eastern, southern and northern Norway owing to what was first announced as a signal error.  Officials later maintained that the incident was caused a major power failure “linked to the signalling system.”

Belgium: No bribes Belgium announced that it would prosecute any MEP suspected of belonging to a Russian network that pays them to promote Kremlin propaganda. With the approaching elections to the European Parliament, PM Alexander De Croo said it was the country’s responsibility to safeguard EU institutions and democratic processes.

Day’s work: A parliamentary select committee has given the go-ahead to the second reading of a bill which, once it becomes law, will make it possible for sex workers to receive employment contracts now that prostitution is not illegal. The bill will be put to the vote at a plenary session of parliament in early May.

Germany: Dr is out From May 1 onwards, the title of doctor may not be used on a German identity card or passport.  A government spokesperson said the change would simplify foreign travel as the authorities in other countries frequently confused the Dr prefix with the first two letters of a surname, “which can lead to delays in immigration queues.”

No thanks A recent survey by the Korber Foundation found that 40 per cent of mayors in small towns said that they, or those who were close to them, had been insulted, threatened or physically attacked owing to their position.  As a result, more than 25 per cent of the mayors admitted that they had considered withdrawing from local politics.

Netherlands: Cash limit The outgoing government hopes to find a way of pushing through a ban on cash purchases of more than €3,000 that was included in a divisive anti-money laundering bill.  Not implementing the ban would mean losing €600 million from the EU’s Recovery and Resilience Plan mitigating the impact of the Covid pandemic.

Bad draw An Almelo court ordered two unlicensed online gambling companies to reimburse two people for financial losses of around €200,000 each. Both firms admitted that they lacked a Netherlands’ operating licence for online gaming but argued that there was no reason for this to invalidate their dealings with the two players.

France: Stay away Vladimir Putin will not be invited to next June’s ceremony marking the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings, the organisers announced. “Russia will, however, be invited to honour the importance of the commitment and sacrifices of the Soviet peoples, and the country’s contribution to the 1945 victory,” they said.

Worth it Amelie Oudea-Castera Sports and the Olympic and Paralympic Games minister, told a Le Monde interviewer that the €2.5 billion of public money that was included in the Games’ €8.8 billion budget was “a useful and sustainable” investment. The outlay would bring “far more” to the nation, the minister declared.

Finland: Other rules Finland’s Eurovision entry, No Rules, must keep European Broadcasting Union (EBU) rules by discarding Windows95Man’s t-shirt with the famous logo and not choosing flesh-coloured underpants when he strips down.  “These may be contrary to other participating broadcasters’ regulations,” said Finland’s state broadcaster Yle.

Sitting pretty Two chairs worth almost €10,000 euros each disappeared from the lobby at Aalto University’s Espoo campus. CCTV camera footage immediately revealed the identity of the thief who took Artek’s Karuselli model which was designed by Yrjo Kukkapuro, a professor at Aalto’s forerunner, the Institute of Industrial Arts.

Ireland: Lost rings POLICE appealed to the public for help in contacting the owner – or owners – of two wedding rings found in a supermarket car park on the Dublin Road in Fermoy (Cork). The Gardai said each ring bore a “unique” engraving that made it easy to ensure that they could only be reclaimed by their rightful owner or owners.

Mine reopens The Tara zinc mine in County Meath, which closed in June 2023 putting 650 out of work, will reopen following talks between the unions and the management. The agreement involves 160 redundancies, all on a voluntary basis, but although core pay remains unchanged, there will be changes in work practices.

Portugal: Lucky number A Braga man bought a €5 ticket and won a house raffled by the local fire brigade who received the century-old property as a bequest from Veneranda Martins, who wanted it to be used as a museum. As the firefighters could not afford the renovations and since locals opposed a sale, they instead decided to organise the draw.

Stepping up Portugal is now Europe’s second most important footwear manufacturer, producing 85 million pairs in 2022, two million more than their neighbours in Spain.   Output in Portugal has increased by 14.4 per cent over the last 10 years, the APICCAPS sector association said, compared with Spain’s 14 per cent reduction.

Sweden: Bear facts Bears are now emerging from their six months of hibernation in Sweden, although Benny Gafvert from the World Wildlife Fund explained that they are not aggressive “unless they are provoked.” He added that except when out hunting with dogs in forest areas, it was not usual for people to encounter bears.

Cash needed The Migration Agency told the Swedish government, that it would be unable to meet its target of providing accommodation in deportation centres for an extra one thousand people without more funding.  With the current level of funding, the Agency would only be able to accommodate another 750 people, it warned.


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Written by

Linda Hall

Originally from the UK, Linda is based in Valenca and is a reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering local news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at