Following protests by Hindu groups who say they've used the swastika as a religious symbol for millennia, Germany announced Monday that it has dropped plans to outlaw the sign throughout the European Union.
In Germany, even carrying this sign has led to a conviction in court
Germany, which currently holds the EU's rotating presidency, still wants to make Holocaust denial illegal throughout the EU to stem racism and xenophobia.
"Public incitement of violence and hatred or the denial or trivialization of genocide with racist or xenophobic motives" should be criminalized EU-wide, German officials said in Brussels on Monday. "But the plan does not include a ban on certain symbols such as swastikas."
The German EU presidency hopes that EU members will come to an agreement on the plan during the meeting in Luxembourg on April 19 and 20.
A similar attempt to make Holocaust denial illegal by Luxembourg in 2005 was blocked by Britain, Denmark and notably Italy, where Silvio Berlusconi's center-right coalition was still in power. The new Italian government under Romano Prodi introduced a national bill over the weekend that would impose jail time for inciting racial hatred.
In Europe, only Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Poland, Romania and Spain have laws that specifically target revisionism.
Turkey's new premier Ahmet Davutoglu has announced his government with most ministers retaining the positions they held under Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who now holds the presidency.
Pilots at Lufthansa's budget airline Germanwings have ended a six-hour strike amid a dispute over early retirement benefits. The strike grounded more than 100 flights at the end of the holiday season.
The European Union is in desperate need of a unified foreign policy as well as a strong foreign minister, veteran EU parliamentarian and foreign committee head Elmar Brok tells DW.
Film composer Alexandre Desplat is leading the jury at this year's Venice Film Festival. It's the first time a musician has been appointed to the role. He tells DW what the job means to him.