Europe

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  • IMF withholds bailout money for Cyprus

    NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — The International Monetary Fund said Thursday it won’t release $108 million (88 million euros) in rescue money for bailed-out Cyprus after the country’s parliament voted to hold a key foreclosure law from taking effect at the end of December. An IMF statement said the month-long suspension of the law contravened the…

  • EU leaders agree to fund for jumpstarting growth

    BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union leaders agreed Thursday to create a strategic investment fund that could generate up to 315 billion euros ($386 billion) in private- and public-sector money to upgrade infrastructure, jumpstart the EU’s sluggish economies and ignite job growth. “The economic situation has improved … but we are not safe yet,” said EU…

  • World War II bomb defused in German city

    BERLIN (AP) — A World War II bomb has been successfully defused in an eastern German city after some 9,700 people were evacuated from the surrounding area and a meeting of a state legislature was interrupted. The 250-kilo (551-pound) bomb was found during construction work Thursday morning near the main railway station in Potsdam, near…

  • Putin: West wants to defang, declaw Russian bear

    MOSCOW (AP) — Sternly warning the West it cannot defang the metaphorical Russian bear, a confident-looking President Vladimir Putin promised Thursday to shore up the plummeting ruble and revive the economy within two years. While he issued a litany of sharp rebukes against the West, Putin struck a conciliatory note on Ukraine, saying that the…

  • Russian sailors leaving France without warship

    PARIS (AP) — Hundreds of Russian sailors pulled out of a French port Thursday, bearing perfumes for their loved ones but lacking the controversial bounty they came for: a 1-billion-euro, French-built warship that has become a hostage to the biggest East-West conflict since the Cold War. The Vladivostok helicopter carrier is part of a strange…

  • Aer Lingus rejects bid by British Airways parent

    DUBLIN (AP) — Irish airline Aer Lingus has rejected a takeover bid by the International Consolidated Airlines Group, the parent company of British Airways and Spain’s Iberia. Shares in the Dublin-based carrier surged by as much as 21 percent Thursday amid rumors of a bid. Those gains were sharply pared after IAG issued a statement…

  • FACT CHECK: Putin on the ruble collapse, Ukraine

    MOSCOW (AP) — A fact-checking look at some of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s statements on the ruble collapse and the Ukrainian crisis from his annual news conference Thursday: ___ ON THE RUSSIAN ECONOMY: PUTIN: “We will rely on these reserves. And I’m sure we will be able to confidently solve major social issues, will be…

  • Denmark targets 2 accused of jihadi propaganda

    COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Danish authorities have opened criminal cases against two men accused of incitement to violence by spreading jihadi videos and images online. Police in North Zealand on Thursday arrested a 21-year-old Dane accused of spreading “extremist video material” on the Internet. Investigators say the suspect had been under surveillance since returning from…

  • Germany arrests 3 accused of spying for Turkey

    BERLIN (AP) — German prosecutors say they have arrested three Turkish men accused of spying on compatriots in Germany for Turkish intelligence. The federal prosecutor’s office said two of the suspects — identified in line with German privacy rules only as Taha G. and Goksel G. — were arrested Wednesday at Frankfurt airport. The third,…

  • 2 more Irishmen charged in IRA home bugged by MI5

    BELFAST, Northern Ireland (AP) — Two more Irishmen have been charged with Irish Republican Army-related offenses as part of a lengthy eavesdropping operation by MI5. The British spy agency, which leads anti-terrorist intelligence efforts in Northern Ireland, says it recorded conversations at several meetings of a splinter group called the Continuity IRA inside a house…

  • How the AP-NORC Center Russia poll was conducted

    The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research Poll of Russia was conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago with fieldwork by GfK Russia from Nov. 22-Dec. 7. It is based on a nationally representative random sample of 2,008 Russians age 18 and older. Funding for the survey came from NORC at the University…

  • Poll: 81 percent back Putin even as ruble falls

    MOSCOW (AP) — From a Western perspective, Vladimir Putin’s days as president of Russia should be numbered: The ruble has lost about half its value, the economy is in crisis and his aggression in Ukraine has turned the country into an international pariah. And yet most Russians see Putin not as the cause, but as…

  • Dutch Cabinet crisis deepens

    THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The Netherlands’ prime minister has canceled plans to attend a European summit in Brussels in order to focus his full attention on a domestic political spat that is threatening to cause the collapse of his 2-year-old governing coalition. The crisis was precipitated by the failure of a health care reform…

  • France fines 13 firms $1.2 bln for price-fixing

    PARIS (AP) — Penalizing a dirty business involving cleaning products, French regulators fined 13 consumer-products makers about 950 million euros ($1.2 billion) for price fixing on goods like shampoos, detergents and toothpaste. France’s competition authority said Thursday that the companies sought to maintain “artificially high” prices in negotiations with supermarkets which filtered down to consumers…

  • AP NewsAlert

    BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union imposes ban on investment in Crimea, other economic sanctions.