German chancellor Angela Merkel leaves after  talks with potential coalition partners in Berlin on Wednesday. Photograph: Bernd Von Jutrczenka/AFP/Getty Images

German chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative bloc and the pro-business Free Democrats described their first talks on building a coalition government(...)

French strike: students demonstrate with public-sector workers on Tuesday. Photograph: Jean-Paul Pelissier/Reuters

Nine trade unions representing France’s 5.4 million civil servants participated in strikes and protests against President Emmanuel Macron’s policies o(...)

Jacinda Ardern (centre), New Zealand’s new opposition Labour leader, speaks to the press alongside members of her party in August. Photograph: Charlotte Greenfield/Reuters/File Photo

A possible Labour-Green coalition narrowed the gap with the ruling National Party in New Zealand’s final election tally, strengthening their position (...)

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy. The controversial grant scheme for first-time buyers is to remain almost completely unchanged in next week’s budget

The controversial grant scheme for first-time buyers is to remain almost completely unchanged in next week’s budget despite previous consideration of (...)

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: Almost half of voters  say they are satisfied with the way he  is doing his job, according to the latest Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Voters approve of Leo Varadkar but want his Government to do a better job, according to the latest Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI opinion poll. Almost half o(...)

Leo Varadkar: Budget 2018 gives the Taoiseach a megaphone to use on voters. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill A hefty 45 per cent say Leo Varadkar has had a positive impact, against just 14 per cent who view his impact negatively. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Statistically, there’s nothing in it. Fine Gael is up a point, to 31 per cent, Fianna Fáil up two, to 29. The main Government party leads the main Opp(...)

Four Catholic families in Cantrell Close, a mixed community housing development in Belfast, have left their homes after sectarian threats. Photograph: Pacemaker Press

The North’s six main parties have come together to condemn sectarianism and call for a paramilitary threat against four Catholic families in south Bel(...)

German chancellor Angela Merkel gestures during an EU  summit in Tallinn, Estonia. Photograph: Ilmars Znotins/AFP/Getty Images

A week on from the federal vote, it’s out with the German election posters and in with the veils for the ritual mating dance. Grabbing power in Berli(...)

Brian Lenihan, Eileen Lemass, Charles Haughey and Gerry Collins at Dublin Castle. Photograph: Eddie Kelly

It was not so much the reopening of Stepaside Garda station that suggested “stroke politics” – it was the unsubtle banners that festooned the constit(...)

French president Emmanuel Macron delivers a speech to set out plans for reforming the European Union at the Sorbonne in Paris, France. Photograph:  Reuters/Ludovic Marin/Pool

France’s dynamic new kid on the EU block, president Emmanuel Macron, had made the closer integration of the EU, and specifically the eurozone, a centr(...)