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BC-AP--Europe News Digest, AP

October 20, 2014



OSIJEK, Croatia — Dozens of suspected Nazi war criminals and SS guards collected millions of dollars in U.S. Social Security benefits after being forced out of the United States, an Associated Press investigation has found. The payments, underwritten by American taxpayers, flowed through a legal loophole that gave the U.S. Justice Department leverage to persuade Nazi suspects to leave the U.S. If they agreed to go, or simply fled before deportation, they could keep their Social Security, according to interviews and internal U.S. government records. By David Rising, Randy Herschaft and Richard Lardner. SENT: 1,000-word abridged version in addition to a longer story, photos.


LUXEMBOURG — European Union nations are working to find 1 billion euros to help fight Ebola in West Africa and seeking a common approach in dealing with the disease outbreak. EU foreign ministers have opened a week of talks so that their 28 leaders can agree by Friday on a package of measures which should include anything from financial aid to common repatriation procedures, treatment facilities on site and training for health workers. By Raf Casert. SENT: 130 words, photos. UPCOMING: 300 words by 1300 GMT.


BERLIN — German prosecutors say they’ve detained two more people following weekend raids on suspected supporters of the Islamic State group and an ultraconservative Syrian rebel organization, Ahrar al-Sham. Two suspected IS supporters were arrested in western Germany Saturday. Authorities searched the homes of 13 more people suspected of links to the two groups. SENT: 130 words.


LONDON — The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have confirmed that their second baby is due in April — the first time they’ve offered a month for the royal birth. Kensington Palace also says that the duchess, who has been sidelined by a prolonged bout of severe morning sickness, continues to improve. SENT: 130 words.



BERLIN — A planned strike by pilots at Lufthansa has been expanded to include a one-day walkout Tuesday at the German airline’s long-haul fleet. The Vereinigung Cockpit union already had announced a 35-hour strike at Lufthansa’s short-haul fleet starting mid-Monday, the latest in a string of walkouts over retirement benefits. It expanded that to target long-haul services from 6 a.m. (0400 GMT) to midnight (2200 GMT) Tuesday. SENT: 130 words.


BERLIN — New data show that the German government’s tax receipts are still rising as Berlin faces cooling growth prospects at home and pressure from abroad to increase spending. Monday’s monthly Finance Ministry report showed the government’s September tax income up 4.7 percent compared with a year earlier, at 57.3 billion euros ($73.1 billion). For the first nine months, the tax take rose 3 percent to 428.9 billion euros. SENT: 130 words.


AMSTERDAM — Royal Philips NV, the world’s largest lighting maker, has reported a 104 million-euro ($132 million) loss for the third quarter, mostly due to a one-off charge after losing a patent infringement lawsuit against Masimo Corp. of the U.S. The loss compares with net profit of 282 million euros in the same period a year earlier, but includes the $466 million award a U.S. jury handed to Masimo. Philips is appealing. SENT: 130 words.


STOCKHOLM — Electrolux says third-quarter growth in the Americas and increased efficiency in Europe helped the home-appliance maker achieve a 42 percent jump in earnings, with overall sales growth of more than 5 percent. Net profit in the three-month period was 933 million kronor ($130 million), while revenue grew to 28.8 billion kronor. SENT: 130 words.


AMSTERDAM — Shares in Dutch animal and fish feed supplier Nutreco NV have surged after the company announced a management-backed 2.69 billion ($3.43 billion) takeover offer from privately-owned trading company SHV Holdings. SHV’s 40-euro ($51) per share cash offer for Nutreco represents a 42-percent premium to shares’ closing price Friday. Shares were up 38 percent at 39.02 euros in early trading Monday. SENT: 130 words.

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