German shipping traffic blocked as rivers freeze

German shipping traffic blocked as rivers freeze

A week of record-breaking subzero temperatures has frozen stretches of Germany’s rivers, hindering boat traffic in several places around the country, the shipping authorities reported on Friday.

Russia’s Putin to attend ball for debutantes in Dresden

Russia’s Putin to attend ball for debutantes in Dresden

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin will attend a debutantes' ball next week in the eastern German city of Dresden where he worked for the Soviet spy agency the KGB, the German government said on Friday.

Hoeneß says Podolski set for return to Cologne

Hoeneß says Podolski set for return to Cologne

Unsettled Bayern Munich forward Lukas Podolski is likely to be sold to his formative club FC Cologne, Bayern's general manager Uli Hoeneß said on Friday.

Doubts cloud Mannichl Nazi stabbing claims

Doubts cloud Mannichl Nazi stabbing claims

Investigators have found discrepancies in Passau police chief Alois Mannichl’s claim that he was stabbed by a neo-Nazi in mid-December and leads point to a domestic dispute instead, the Süddeutsche Zeitung reported on Friday.

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Man arrested for murder 31 years later

A 76-year-old German man suspected of the brutal rape and murder of an 86-year-old woman has been arrested on the basis of DNA evidence re-examined more than 31 years after the crime, police said Friday.

Steinbrück calls for lower entry tax rate

Steinbrück calls for lower entry tax rate

German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrück is mulling a cut in the base income tax rate to 12 percent from 15 percent to help pull Europe's biggest economy out of a deep recession, his spokesman said Friday.

Cops chase bulldog puppy 15 kilometres down autobahn

Cops chase bulldog puppy 15 kilometres down autobahn

Authorities in the German state of Lower Saxony chased a bulldog puppy some 15 kilometres along the autobahn before capturing and safely returning the rambunctious dog to its owner, Oldenburg police said on Friday.

Happy birthday Heiner Müller

Happy birthday Heiner Müller

The eastern German dramatist Heiner Müller was born eighty years ago on Friday. As the cultural establishment salutes his legend, Daniel Miller questions his legacy.

Commerzbank shares slammed by government bailout

Commerzbank shares slammed by government bailout

German markets emerged from shell-shock Friday following news the state will take a 25 percent stake in the second biggest bank, Commerzbank, so it can manage a costly takeover of the troubled Dresdner Bank.

Turkish Karneval club was a TV spoof

Turkish Karneval club was a TV spoof

News this week that the first Turkish Karneval club had been founded in Cologne with the aim of making the wild and boozy festivities a more civilised matter befitting Muslims has turned out to be a TV spoof, broadcaster RTL revealed on Friday.

Steinmeier heads to Egypt for Gaza talks

Steinmeier heads to Egypt for Gaza talks

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said he would travel to the Middle East on Friday for talks on ending the bloodshed in the Gaza Strip and Israel.

Alcohol ruled out in Althaus ski crash

Alcohol ruled out in Althaus ski crash

Investigators on Friday said they have ruled out alcohol in the deadly ski collision that seriously injured Thuringia’s state premier Dieter Althaus and killed a Slovakian woman on New Year’s Day in Austria.

German UN troops a possibility in Gaza

German UN troops a possibility in Gaza

A high-ranking Foreign Ministry official on Friday said Berlin would consider sending German UN troops to the Gaza Strip to help quell the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

Integration minister rejects including ethnicity in crime stats

Integration minister rejects including ethnicity in crime stats

Germany's commissioner for integration, Maria Böhmer, has rejected calls to include the ethnic background of criminals in police statistics by her own conservatives, daily Frankfurter Rundschau reported on Friday.

Retail sales sank in 2008

Retail sales sank in 2008

German retail sales probably contracted last year on a so-called real, or adjusted basis, the national statistics office said on Friday, after releasing provisional data for the month of November.

Soldier jailed for leaving baby to die in barracks

Soldier jailed for leaving baby to die in barracks

A German soldier was jailed Thursday for leaving her newborn daughter to die after giving birth at army barracks toilet while allegedly unaware she was pregnant.