Protestors on Pariser Platz in Berlin demonstrate against new laws that could give the Germany’s Federal Intelligence Service  (BND) greater powers of surveillance. Photograph: Klaus-Dietmar Gabbert/EPA

New laws passed since Snowden revelations may give more powers to intelligence service

A quarter century after German unification, childcare remains one of the big cultural divides between east and west

Leipzig authorities ordered to pay three mothers €14,000 in lost earnings

Russian President Vladimir Putin (C-L) and German chancellor Angela Merkel (C-R) converse at the German Federal Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, October 20th, 2016. The leaders of Germany, France and Russia met to discuss the situation in Syria after the so-called Normandy Format Summit on Ukrainian conflict settlement. Photograph: Michael Klimentyev/EPA

Vladimir Putin, François Hollande, Petro Poroshenko meet in Berlin over Ukraine and Syrian conflicts

Russian president Vladimir Putin is welcomed by German chancellor Angela Merkel as he arrives in Berlin. Photograph: Odd Andersen/AFP/Getty Images

Moscow’s Syria bombing campaign looms large over talks with Poroshenko, Hollande

Construction work outside the  Reichstag in Berlin in September 1999, shortly after the German government moved from Bonn. Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters

Berlin Letter: costs of machinery of state based in two German cities are set to persist

German chancellor Angela Merkel: warned Moscow  its ongoing support for Syrian president Bashar al-Assad meant “all options” remained on the table, including further EU sanctions. Photograph: Getty Images

German chancellor says she is not expecting miracles

Moral dilemma: would it be right to shoot down a passenger airline destined to be crashed by terrorists into a football stadium holding 70,000?

Viewers’ dilemma: would they shoot down an airliner set to crash into a packed football stadium?

A fire blazes on the premises of the chemical company BASF in Ludwigshafen, Germany, on Monday. Photograph: According to the company, at least one person has been killed, six other people are still missing and at least six were injured. The cause of the explosion is yet to be cleared. Photograph: EPA/Einsatzreport Südhessen

Residents of Ludwighshafen urged to stay indoors after incidents at BASF facilities

Bomb plotting suspect Jaber al-Bakr apparently took his own life in a detention centre in Leipzig. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Jaber al-Bakr was arrested on Monday when allegedly planning to bomb a Berlin airport

 German police outside of the apartment building where Syrian terror suspect Jaber al-Bakr was arrested in Leipzig on Monday. Photograph:   Carsten Koall/Getty Images

Relief but anxiety in Germany after suspect tied up with cable and handed over to police

The notorious Volksgericht or People’s Court. It was 1998 before a united Germany got around to overturning the court’s verdicts. photograph: Ullstein Bild/Getty

Study shows West German judiciary was saturated by Nazi officials after the war

Fears that Deutsche Bank might struggle to pay a multibillion US fine for misselling securities have sparked weeks of stock market turbulence. Reuters/Kai Pfaffenbach

Plan could see revival of Deutschland AG postwar network of mutual cross-holdings

Polish prime minister Beata Szydlo in parliament on Thursday, when lawmakers rejected 352-58 an abortion Bill at the committee stage. Photograph: Pawel Supernak/AFP/Getty Images

MPs overwhelmingly back dismissal of Bill that would effectively outlaw terminations

Participants march with banners and placards during the Alternative für Deutschland rally titled “Protect borders, provide social security”, in Erfurt, Germany, on  September 21st. Photograph: Martin Schutt/EPA

Justice minister Heiko Maas says populist party is ‘pouring oil on the fire’ for own ends

Angela Merkel: Asked a few years ago what she associated with Germany, the chancellor  replied: well-sealed windows. Photograph: Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Many Germans seem not to be sure what is German and what is not these days

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan and German TV comedian Jan Böhmermann. Photographs: Getty Images

Comedian Jan Böhmermann made provocative comments about the Turkish president

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in a live video link at a press conference  in Berlin on Tuesday, during which he promised leaks this month of “significant material”. Photograph: Maurizio Gambarini/ EPA

Wikileaks founder tells journalists it is ‘false’ to say he does not like Hillary Clinton

Demonstrators carrying flags emblazoned with the symbol of the right-wing Identitarian movement join with Pegida supporters on German Unity Day in Dresden. Photograph:  Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Chancellor targeted by jeering crowd over migration policy outside Dresden church

Germany’s Social Democrat leader Sigmar Gabriel mocked Deutsche Bank’s version of the drama. “I don’t know whether to laugh or rage that a company that’s made a business model out of speculation has declared itself a victim of speculators,” he said. Photograph: Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images

Sigmar Gabriel accuses John Cryan of hypocrisy over bank’s growing financial problems

The hormone-fuelled optimism of Lisdoonvarna: Joe Copse from Newcastlewest and Maura O’Connor from Galway enjoying a dance at the Matchmaker Bar. Photograph: Eamon Ward

Two books looking at how the Irish are portrayed abroad provide insights we might miss

A man walks past Deutsche Bank offices in London, Britain, December 5, 2013. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor/File Photo

US fine of $14 billion has plunged pillar bank into crisis with potential to rival Lehman

 ECB president Mario Draghi: he told the Bundestag European committee his bank saw no evidence for housing bubbles because rising residential real estate prices. Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Remarks come as Germany denies it is working on rescue plan for Deutsche Bank

Supporters of the anti-immigrant Pegida movement hold up a banner reading “Merkel – Non-Word of the Year” during a rally in Dresden. Photograph: Arno Burgi/AFP/Getty Images

Anti-Islamic minority’s Monday night protests are hurting German city’s reputation

 Deutsche Bank  shares fell lower than they were during the banking crisis and down some 50 per cent this year. Shares closed on Monday at €10.55: last October they were €27.975

Drop at Germany’s biggest financial institution sparks sell-off in European banks

 Martin Winterkorn: data from July 2015, leaked to the ‘Bild am Sonntag’, suggests he agreed with VW strategy not to admit the scale of the wrongdoing.  Photograph: Michele Tantussi/Bloomberg

Martin Winterkorn said to have know about illicit VW software before scandal broke

Harry Kessler, 1906, by Edvard Munch. Photograph: © National Museums, Berlin/

Almost 80 years after his death, Berlin is acknowledging one of its most celebrated sons

Participants march with banners and placards during an Alternative für Deutschland party rally in Erfurt, Germany this week. Photograph: Martin Schutt/EPA

Party candidate caught selling Nazi-era medals while Berlin MP calls refugees ‘worms’

A protest against plans to introduce a new abortion law in front of the Sejm parliament building in Warsaw on Thursday. Photograph: Pawel Supernak/EPA

Parliament debates Bill to ban abortion as government continues conservative push

Exruptive’s airport scanning system: you dock a trolley – complete with luggage – into the scanner system, walk through the regular scanner  and collect your luggage at the other end.

Exruptive claims trolley-docking system gets you through security four times faster

Pirate Party parliamentary representative Gerwald Claus-Brunner, who apparently murdered a 29-year-old man he had been stalking before electrocuting himself in his own apartment. Photograph: Sebastian Kahnert/EPA

Pirate Party’s Gerwald Claus-Brunner believed to have killed ex-boyfriend before suicide

Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives for a meeting of the joint Christian Democrats and Christian Social Union parliamentary group in the Bundestag in Berlin on Tuesday. Photograph: Bernd Von Jutrczenka/EPA

Strategists believe Germany’s ‘Merkel must go’ mood is an opportunity to dump her

An election placard for the Pirate Party featuring Gerwald Claus-Brunner pictured in Berlin on Monday. In the background police can be seen entering his home,where he had taken his own life. Photograph: Bernd von Jutrczenka/ EPA

Gerwald Claus-Brunner and his party had promised to overthrow traditional politics

Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor and Christian Democratic Union  party leader, on Monday apologised for her handling of the migration crisis. Photograph: Krisztian Bocsi/Bloomberg

Analysis: Chancellor faces difficult task of re-engaging voters alienated by migration crisis

German chancellor and  chairwoman of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) Angela Merkel at a news conference in Berlin on Monday. “If I could, I would turn back time many, many years to better prepare myself, the federal government and all those in positions of responsibility for the situation we were rather unprepared for in the late summer of 2015,” she said. Photograph: Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters

Prospect of alternative national coalition emerges after heavy loss in Berlin state elections

German chancellor Angela Merkel attends a news conference after an EU summit n Bratislava, Slovakia. Photograph: Leonhard Foeger/Reuters

The German chancellor is increasingly vulnerable amid backlash to her migration policy

 Edward Snowden speaks via video link at a news conference for the launch of a campaign calling for President Obama to pardon him on September 14th, 2016. Germany’s foreign intelligence agency’s activities were exposed by leaks by Mr Snowden. Photograph: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Report shows 18 serious breaches of German fundamental law, 12 formal complaints

Winning election formula: AfD candidate Georg Pazderski casts his vote. Photograph: Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters

Pressure on German chancellor to halt slippage as far-right AfD wins 10th state election

A woman walks past election posters for incumbent mayor of Berin, Michael Müller  of the SPD and CDU candidate Jutta Kaddatz in Schoeneberg. Germany’s anti-immigration AfD party is looking at fresh gains. Photograph: Getty Images

Fears over migration and frustration with political parties as Germans vote in state poll

Women dressed in traditional Bavarian Dirndls attend the annual beer tasting prior to the2016 Oktoberfest in Munich. Photograph: Alexander Hassenstein/Getty

Recent attacks raise fears around event as about six million expected to attend

Liam Condon, head of Bayer AG’s crop science division: “GM acceptance in Europe is exceptionally low and . . . it’s something we have to accept.”

Head of Bayer crop sciences sees merger as key to long-term food security strategy

German MEP Martin Sonneborn addressed his remarks to President Michael D Higgins. Photograph: Getty Images

Martin Sonneborn says State should ‘take the money and run. It is a win-win situation’

The young woman from the Carinthia region of Austria told the newspaper that the photos were visible to 700 Facebook users linked to her parents’ account.  Her parents refused to delete the pictures when she asked. Photograph: Dado Ruvic/Reuters

Woman discovered 500 images on social network from all stages of her life after joining

Cardinal Christoph Schönborn said it was clear that Europe was facing a crisis of faith and that, thanks to the migration crisis, would sooner rather than later face a major identity question: “What will become of Europe?” Photograph:  Franco Origlia/Getty Images

Archbishop of Vienna says the continent is ‘gambling away its Christian heritage’

German police in heavy protection gear stand guard in front of the ‘Hotel Fuerstenhof’ hotel in Leipzig, Germany, September 6th, 2016. On Tuesday 13th, the federal criminal police office said that six locations in two German states were searched. It said that, as well as the arrests, ‘extensive material’ was seized as evidence. Photograph: Sebastian Willnow/EPA

Syrian men planned to carry out ‘previously determined order’ from Isis, prosecutors say

Austria’s interior minister Wolfgang Sobotka announces the postponement of the re-run of the Austrian presidential election, in Vienna on Monday. Photograph: Christian Bruna/EPA

Re-run of presidential poll was planned for October after initial result declared invalid

German finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble and Irish Minister for Finance Michael Noonan: Schäuble is no friend of Dublin’s corporate tax model. File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Finance minister says ruling fallout will drag on while Germany faces post-Brexit costs

Under pressure: Angela Merkel in Neustrelitz. Photograph: Bernd Wuestneck/DPA

German sentiment has changed drastically in a year. Since the chancellor tried to alleviate the crisis of fleeing Syrians by let(...)

About 600 people in 120 caravans descended on the town of Ginsheim-Gustavsburg (above), southwest of Frankfurt, a week ago, and camped illegally on a site beside the Rhine. File photograph: Wikimedia Commons

Residents say brawls, public urination and shoplifting occurred amid visit by 600 people

Landmarks of Hamburg’s proud – and moneyed – past: the Speicherstadt mercantile quarter.

Even to a jaded Berliner, there’s much more to Hamburg than its notorious Reeperbahn

 Refugees  after being rescued  in the Mediterranean this week. A spike in asylum seekers arriving in Greece from across the Aegean Sea has sparked fears about the future of Turkey’s migration deal with the EU. Photograph: EPA

Turkish diplomat says Ankara aims to join EU by 100th anniversary as republic in 2023

A woman wears a burka in  Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Chancellor  Angela Merkel said, in an interview to appear on Friday, that the burka was a “political and legal consideration” and that her interior minister had her “full support” in the search for a solution. Photograph: Michaela Rehle/Reuters

Ministers to redraft demands as chancellor describes veil as impediment to integration

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan addressing supporters in Ankara last week. The German ministry paper links him directly to what the EU views as terrorist organisations. Photograph: Kayhan Ozer/AFP/Getty Images

Report set to anger Turkish president and pile pressure on Angela Merkel

Dr Janusz Rudzinski: the Polish-born gynaecologist has practised in Germany since 1981

Irish among those having terminations in Germany due to its similar laws to Poland

Germany’s interior minister Thomas de Maizière prepares to announce new anti-terror measures in Berlin. Photograph: Tobias Schwarz/AFP/Getty Images

Deportation and policing main focus of measures which avoid controversy

Poland’s constitutional court chief justice Andrzej Rzeplinski (right) and other judges arrive in the courtroom  in Warsaw on Thursday.  Photograph: Janek Skarzynski/AFP/Getty Images

Constitutional court dismisses revised Bill on how it goes about business

A womanm wears a burka in Heidelburg, Germany. Federal interior minister Thomas de Maizière distanced himself from proposals to water down doctor-patient confidentiality and a ban on the headgear. Photograph: iStock

Proposal to strip citizenship from those who fight with Islamic State remains

German chancellor Angela Merkel:  Proposals, to be presented by her Christian Democratic Union next week, will reportedly include a ban on burkas and dual citizenship for non-EU citizens. Photograph: AP

Merkel mulls series of security proposals, including reported ban on burkas

Masked police leave after searching a house in Hildesheim, Germany on Wednesday. Photograph: EPA

Ideas reportedly include prohibition on burka, relaxing medical confidentiality rules

Madonna poses at the opening of the Hard Candy fitness centre  in Berlin in 2013. Photograph: Odd Andersen/AFP/Getty Images)

The collapse of Hard Candy ends a strange business arrangement that began in 2013

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan greats supporters in Istanbul during a rally on Sunday, at which he said western leaders have “not shown us that they are against the coup . . . their silence is inexcusable”. Photograph: Ozan Kose/AFP/Getty Images

Ahead of visit to Russia, president Erdogan suggests Germany is ‘feeding the terrorists’

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker Jean-Claude Juncker: it would not be wise to tell Turkey talks are over. Photograph: Reuters

EC president’s warning comes after Austrian chancellor Christian Kern described as “diplomatic fiction” Turkey’s EU accession hop(...)

Karen Maguire from Tipperary and Cait Lynch from Castleisland both play for the Dutch team Hollux. Photograph: Cyril Byrne / The Irish Times

1,700 players gather in Dublin this week for GAA World Games. With so many overseas players, it still an Irish sport?

Four Polish women embrace the spirit of the occasion at Oktoberfest, Munich, Germany. Photograph: Johannes Simon/Getty Images

Festival organisers around the world may face fee as city applies for property rights

People attending an anti-government, pro-choice demonstration in Warsaw.  Wojtek Radwanski/AFP/Getty Images

Parliament reviews restrictive Bill as pro-choice side lodges liberal one

Tensions rise on Sunday as about 40,000 supporters of president Recep Tayyip Erdogan gather in Cologne in support of the Turkish leader, who had hoped to give a video address.Photograph: Sascha Steinbach/Getty Images

Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu says he expects visa-free travel by October

Two girls at a tribute close to the Olympia Einkaufszentrum shopping centre in Munich. Photograph: Christof Stache/AFP/Getty

Officials in Munich criticised Twitter users who 'played an appalling game with fear'

 German president Joachim Gauck, his wife Daniela Schadt and  Chancellor Angela Merkel attend a memorial service for the victims of last week’s shooting spree in Munich, which left nine victims dead. Photograph:   Johannes Simon/Getty Images

Father of gunman who killed nine people says he is receiving death threats

Interrupting her holidays to face the press for 90 minutes in Berlin, German chancellor Angela Merkel condemned four violent attacks in recent days. Photograph: Bloomberg

German Chancellor urges greater effort to identify radicals and derail weapons sales

German chancellor Angela Merkel reacts as she delivers remarks during a press briefing on domestic and foreign policy issues at the Bundespressekonferenz in Berlin on Thursday. Photograph: EPA

German leader refuses to change refugee policy: ‘I stand by the main decisions we made’

Kosovar Albanians at the funeral of Dijamant Zabergja, a victim of the shooting in Munich, in the village of Ropice, Kosovo. Photograph: Petrit Prenaj/EPA

Angela Merkel facing mounting pressure over refusal to raise terror warning level

Following the spate of terror attacks – the most recent being the murder of an 86-year-old priest during Mass in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray  on Tuesday – Pope Francis warned that “the world is at war” with Islamist extremism. Photographs: The Irish Times

Islamic State expected to strike in Europe in response to losing ground in Syria

 Police officers operate on a scene following an explosion in Ansbach, Germany, 25th July 2016. A man was killed and 12 others were injured in an explosion in Franconia Ansbach late on 24th July. Photograph: Daniel Karmann/EPA

Mohammad Daleel’s video reportedly cited West’s bombing of Arab world as motivation

Police at the site in Ansbach where a failed asylum seeker from Syria blew himself up and wounded 15 after being turned away from an open-air music festival. Photograph: Daniel Karmann/DPA Via AP

Police chief calls for calm as ‘Isis soldier’ blows himself up in Ansbach, injuring 15

A police officer in protective gear inspects a back pack used to carry an explosive device at the scene of a suicide attack in the southern German city of Ansbach on Monday. Photograph: AFP

News agency close to terror group says a soldier of Islamic State carried out attack

Germany’s chancellor Angela Merkel leaves the podium after making a statement on Saturday about the previous day’s  shootings in Munich. Photograph: Carsten Koall/Getty Images

Oktoberfest plans have been overshadowed by violence in Ansbach and Munich

Austrian data protection campaigner Max Schrems: “I could be financially ruined, just because I want my rights respected.” Photograph: Julien Warnand/EPA

Ireland’s Data Protection Commissioner is pleasing no one with ongoing privacy case

A police officer  outside the Olympia shopping mall in Munich, Germany, on Friday.  Photograph: Sebastian Widmann/AP

Assuming Isis is behind every violent incident is a major victory for Islamist terror

 A message  at the scene of Friday’s shooting spree in Munich reads: “You did not deserve this.” Ali David Sonboly’s motivation was not Islamist extremism, investigators said, nor have they found any links to Germany’s refugee crisis. Photograph: EPA

German police arrest an Afghan youth on suspicion of a connection to the killings

People mourn at a memorial of candles and flowers in front of the Olympia Einkaufszentrum shopping centre in Munich, southern Germany, on Sunday. Photograph: Christof Stache/AFP/Getty Images

A quiet, troubled young man, Ali David Sonboly, took nine lives as fear and panic set in

Police secure the area around the McDonald’s restaurant and OEZ shopping centre the day after a shooting spree left in which nine people were killed in Munich. Photograph: Joerg Koch/Getty Images

Q&A: German teenager killed nine people and himself in attack on Friday night

Police officers stand at the entrance of the subway station near the shopping mall Olympia Einkaufzentrum OEZ in Munich on Saturday. Photograph:  AFP/Getty Images

Investigators say it is significant incident took place on anniversary of Norway massacre

Return to Montauk: Colm Tóibín and Volker Schlöndorff in New York. Photograph: Franziska Strauss

The Irish writer has teamed up with Stellan Skarsgård, Nina Hoss and Volker Schlöndorff to make his first film, about ‘rewriting(...)

Police escort people with their hands raised from the Olympia Shopping Centre. Photograph: Joerg Koch/Getty Images

Any Islamist link to Olympic shopping centre attacks could have dire consequences

The entrance of a McDonalds restaurant  near the Olympia shopping mall, where yesterday’s shooting started. Photograph: Michael Dalder/Reuters

Sixteen people, including several children, injured in suspected terrorist incident

German chancellor Angela Merkel and British prime minister Theresa May at their first formal meeting in Berlin. Amid the smiles, it was the first frisson of tension. Photograph: John MacDougall/AFP/Getty Images

PM and Angela Merkel underline mutual interest in maintaining strong political ties

German chancellor Angela Merkel: will welcome Theresa May with military honours on her inaugural visit as British prime minister to Berlin on Wednesday. Photograph: Kay Nietfeld

German chancellor set to repeat she sees Brexit ball firmly in British PM’s court

Police officers search for evidence near Würzburg, Germany, following a train attack. Photograph: Josef Hildenbrand/EPA

Islamic State claims responsibility for assault but investigators have yet to find a direct link

 Firefighters stand at a road block in Wuerzburg, Germany. Reports state that a man allegedly wielding an axe injured multiple passengers on a regional train in Wuerzburg. Photograph: Karl-Josef Hildenbrand/EPA

Police shoot 17-year-old Afghan suspect after assault leaves three people seriously injured

Guests arrive at the “Festspielhaus” for Bayreuth Wagner music festival in 2008:  this year’s festival has been plagued with drama, from conductors walking out to organisers rescinding its invitation to German performance artist Jonathan Meese in horror at the running costs for his proposed staging. Photograph: Joerg Koch/AFP/Getty

Organisers find new conductor – but he warns ‘not to expect miracles’ on opening night

EU and German flags at half mast on the Reichstag parliament building in Berlin after the Nice attack. Photograph: Paul Zinken/EPA

British authorities have ordered review of security arrangements around big public events

German chancellor Angela Merkel and  the new UK prime minister Theresa May. Photograph: Oli Scarff/Thierry Charlier/AFP/Getty Images

The most powerful women in Europe share more than biographical details

 Rigaerstrasse residents with  a banner that reads:  “We want our street back.” The street was the scene of a recent riot that left 123 police officers injured and led to the arrests of 86 protesters.  Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Uneasy stalemate settles on Berlin street left-wingers see as last stand against capitalism

Chancellor Angela Merkel with Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Berlin on Tuesday. Dr Merkel said she understood Irish concerns. Photograph: John MacDougall/AFP/Getty Images

Paolo Gentiloni expresses confidence frontier controls could be avoided in Ireland

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and German chancellor Angela Merkel at a joint news conference  in Berlin, Germany. Photograph: John MacDougall/AFP/Getty Images

German leader says Dublin’s voice ‘will be heard as much as anyone else’s’ in EU talks

Taoiseach Enda Kenny will meet German chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin today.

Italian foreign minister Paolo Gentiloni will meet Charlie Flanagan in Dublin today

US president Barack Obama after attending the Nato Summit in Warsaw: his criticism of Poland’s democracy was censored by the state-run broadcaster TVP. Photograph: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

US president’s criticism of country’s democracy turned into praise by state-run station

Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan. Photograph: Alan Rowlette

Series of meetings on coming weeks to discuss impending negotiations

Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan said Dublin would remain ‘fully at the heart of Europe’ and that the EU had been the ‘foundation stone’ of Ireland’s recent economic recovery. Photograph:  Brian Lawless/PA

‘I detect a knowledge and an appreciation of our unique status, and this will form part of the negotiations’

Flowers and letters of protest on the steps of the cathedral in front of Cologne’s main train station, on January 11th last, following sexual assaults on women there on New Year’s Eve. Photograph: Patrik Stollarz/AFP/Getty Images

Rape loophole closed as country struggles with issue of immigrants and sex assaults

At least 35 prosecutors and customs investigators quizzed pilots and other staff at Ryanair hubs across Germany on Tuesday, including Berlin and Cologne.

Move is part of inquiry into claims of evasion of tax and social security payments by pilots

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