The Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded the Nobel Peace Prize to the European Union this morning for its success in turning a continent marked by war to one of peace. Even so, the award comes at a time when European is experiencing significant financial strain and political tension.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel reassured Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou that Greece is an "integral" part of the euro zone during a telephone conversation on Wednesday. As concerns over whether Greece will default on its debt, the Greek government has restated its commitment to meet deficit reductions required by the two bailouts it received from the European Union. The BBC's Steve Evans reports from Berlin, where German citizens are skeptical of bailing out another country.
European shares have fallen today after a meeting between French President Nicholas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel failed to calm investors' fears that the debt crisis could spread. The two leaders agreed that more economic integration is needed between the countries in the Eurozone during a meeting yesterday.
Growth in the German economy has slowed sharply. Germany, which had been driving the economic recovery in the euro zone, saw its economy grow by just 0.1% in the previous quarter, according to figures from the national statistics office. Growth in the euro zone as a whole also slowed. The figures come ahead of a key meeting between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, scheduled for later this morning. The two leaders are set to discuss ways to solve the euro zone debt crisis that has threatened to engulf Italy and Spain and has sparked turmoil on global stock markets.
Today's arraignment of Anders Behring Breivik, the already-confessed suspect in terror attacks that left nearly 100 people dead across Norway on Friday, was closed to the press. So too will be Breivik's trial, a judge has ruled, preventing the Christian fundamentalist and apparent right-wing extremist who wanted to "defend Europe" from Muslim immigration and liberal governmental policies from wearing an outfit reportedly bearing a crusader's cross.
Greece's financial woes continue to teeter on the brink of collapse as they face the possibility of becoming the first Euro-zone country to default. Finance ministers gave the fledgling nation two weeks to shape up its finances or face not receiving anymore bailout money. On top of this, Prime Minister George Papandreou faces a vote of confidence in Parliament today, and the result of that could have major consequences as to which direction the country will be going.
John Demjanjuk has been found guilty of being an accessory to murder as a Nazi concentration camp guard. He was living as a retired autoworker living in Ohio. In 2009, he was deported from the U.S. for a second time and sent to Germany, where he was charged with helping to force nearly 28 thousand Jews to their death at the Sobibor death camp in Poland. Reporter for the BBC, Steve Evans was at the trial.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in Berlin at the latest NATO summit, where members are talking about how to proceed with operations in Libya. Voices out of Libya say that NATO has not done enough to stop Col. Gadhafi; and Clinton will likely stress the need for NATO to go after pro-Gadhafi fighters. The BBC's Steve Evans reports from the talks in Germany.
There are 17 nuclear power plants in Germany, but at least seven of them will be shut down in the next three months. This comes at a time when there is increased apprehension following Japan's nuclear disaster and thousands of demonstrators in Germany rallied for the facilities to be shut down. That call was heeded by Chancellor Angela Merkel while the country reassesses its national energy strategy.
The shutdown will apply to 7 plants that went into operation before the end of 1980. The BBC's Steve Evans reports from Berlin.
The BBC documentary "Aftershock" takes a close up look at how Americans are getting on one year after the economic collapse. To record “Aftershock,” our partners at the BBC World Service asked Steve Evans, the host of BBC show “Business Daily” to go to Nevada and chronicle the lives of those impacted. Steve Evans joins us to talk about the documentary.
Watch a promo video of "Aftershock":