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The Local's top ten features of 2012

Published: 26 Dec 2012 15:57 GMT+01:00

Pink stinks, says toy marketing campaigner

A campaigner from the Pinkstinks pressure group told us how advertisers are forcing gender stereotypes onto Germany's children, after Kinder Surprise released a new “just for girls” egg this year, wrapped in pink foil and advertised by fairies in push-up bras.

'German hooligans look up to the English'

The Bundesliga may be booming, but violence at matches is growing. In an interview with the editor of No Dice football magazine, we explored the rising tide of hooliganism among the country's fans.

How Germans are turning to dumpsters for dinner

After reporting that each Germans throw out, on average, 82 kilos of food each year, we literally dived into Berlin's bins in the middle of the night to see what we could find.

Pixelhead - the ultimate in anonymous?

A Berlin-based artist caused a stir with a pixellated balaclava aimed at disguising a person's identity in a society increasingly rife with CCTV. We tried it on, and had a think about the role of social media in Germany.

Boozy dieters shed kilos the 'Schrothkur' way

Heavy drinking might not be the first thing that comes to mind when trying to lose weight. But as we discovered, dieters deep in Bavaria are rushing to enrol in the “Schrothkur” weight-loss programme – perhaps because it involves lots, and lots of schnapps.

I've been to the future and it really aches

Germany's population is ageing and in order to get a taste of things to come, The Local slipped into a special suit at the Berlin Charite hospital which makes the wearer feel very, very old.

Scientist seeks deposits for elephant sperm bank

We spoke to a scientist so dedicated to making sure that bull elephants in captivity didn't become too inbred, that he was tracking down wild ones and using an electrifying method to gather their genetic material.

Police take refugees' blankets despite cold

In September a group of refugees walked from Bavaria to Berlin, protesting against their living conditions. We tracked their progress and went down to their camp at the Brandenburg Gate shortly after the police confiscated their blankets.

‘The euro is still a brilliant notion’

In the first instalment of a new series, we sat down with the US ambassador to Germany Philip Murphy, and chatted about all things politics and business.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Today's headlines
Ex-minister: Merkel's Greece policy is 'fatal'
Former German vice-chancellor and foreign minister Joschka Fischer. Photo: DPA.

Ex-minister: Merkel's Greece policy is 'fatal'

Joschka Fischer, former German vice-chancellor and foreign minister between 1998 and 2005, unleashed an uncompromising attack on Chancellor Angela Merkel over her Greek policy in an article published by newpspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung on Monday. READ  

Two court cases to test criminal links to Isis
Photo: DPA

Two court cases to test criminal links to Isis

Islamic State members in Germany have turned to petty crime and selling stolen artifacts to fund the extremist group's war efforts, reports Der Westen. READ  

Study: 1 in 5 big firms attacked by hackers
Photo illustration: DPA.

Study: 1 in 5 big firms attacked by hackers

One-fifth of Germany’s major companies has been attacked by hackers within the past three years, but companies are also not taking cyber security as seriously as they should, according to a study released on Monday. READ  

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei gets visa to Germany
Chinese artist and dissident Ai Weiwei shows off his passport, which was recently returned to him after four years. Photo: DPA.

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei gets visa to Germany

Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei has been given a visa to travel to Germany, he told AFP on Monday, just days after police handed him back his passport following a four year confiscation. READ  

Politician's car blown up in far-right heartland
Right-wing protests in Freital on the outskirts of Dresden in June. Photo: DPA.

Politician's car blown up in far-right heartland

The car of a left-wing politician was blown up early on Monday morning in an east German town that has been the scene of fierce anti-refugee protests, with the politician claiming he is "top of the hit list" for the far-right. READ  

Greece crisis
Berlin restaurant serves up Greek Crisis Menu
Chrissidi came up with the idea two weeks ago. Photo: DPA

Berlin restaurant serves up Greek Crisis Menu

A Greek restaurant-owner in Berlin is bringing his homeland's current political crisis to life for customers – by creating a menu based on Greece's financial struggles. READ  

Fire on Munich train leads to cancellations
The fire was on an inter city train. Photo: DPA.

Fire on Munich train leads to cancellations

All trains from Munich's central station were cancelled on Monday morning after fire services had to put out a fire on a locomotive. READ  

Merkel urges Turkey to stick with Kurdish talks
Turkish anti-terror police have been targeting alleged members of the Islamic State and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Photo: DPA

Merkel urges Turkey to stick with Kurdish talks

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Sunday urged Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to stick with the Kurdish peace process despite escalating violence, her office said. READ  

Jewish Games to be held at site of 'Nazi Olympics'
Berlin's Olympiastadion. Photo: Marcel Schoenhardt, via Wikimedia Commons

Jewish Games to be held at site of 'Nazi Olympics'

Seventy years after the end of World War II, Berlin from Monday hosts the European Maccabi Games, dubbed the Jewish Olympics, at the site of the 1936 "Nazi Games". READ  

Merkel tops guest list at Wagner Festival
Preparing for the festival. Tobias Hase / DPA

Merkel tops guest list at Wagner Festival

German Chancellor Angela Merkel topped the guest list Saturday of the gala opening of the Bayreuth Festival, one of the highlights in Germany's cultural calendar. READ  

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