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And also....zoo urges deadly spider donation, the Vatican condom row, and the New Year girlfriend hiring app

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By Euronews
And also....zoo urges deadly spider donation, the Vatican condom row, and the New Year girlfriend hiring app

Every Friday journalists from euronews’ various language teams choose a selection of stories from Europe and beyond which did not reach the international headlines

Help us by catching deadly spiders, urges zookeeper

An Australian zookeeper has urged people to catch and donate deadly funnel-web spiders to help replenish antidote stocks.

Supplies are said to be running low after a spate of spider bites.

The Australian Reptile Park, the country’s sole supplier of funnel-web venom, relies on the public to hand in the spiders.

The spiders are then milked for their venom which is used to produce an antidote.

Making sure it’s made in Italy

A new smartphone app has been launched to let consumers know if they are buying genuine Italian goods or not.

The free app allows shoppers to scan the bar codes of products to see if they have been made in Italy.

It has been created to prevent cheaper foreign items being passed off as Italian.

Italy has the most products protected by the EU’s geographic labels of origin scheme, which seeks to protect regional items from imitation.

Vatican condom row

Pope Francis is to temporarily appoint a personal delegate to run the Knights of Malta.

It follows the resignation of the head of the ancient Catholic order.

Grand Master Matthew Festing, 67, resigned on Tuesday after the Pope asked him to step down.

Grand masters of the institution, which was founded in the 11th century, usually keep their positions for life.

Festing quit after a bitter two-month dispute with the Vatican over his sacking of a senior Knights of Malta official.

Grand Chancellor Albrecht Freiherr von Boeselager, was forced to quit after he allowed a medical project to distribute condoms to the poor.

Swedes eco-friendly beyond the grave

Seven-out-of-ten Swedes want an environmentally-friendly funeral, according to The Local.

The survey was commissioned by a funeral provider.

Common requests include having shrouds made from organic cotton and locally-produced flowers.

Chinese city provides parking spaces for those needing the toilet

Free parking spaces have been installed in China for drivers who need to use the toilet, the BBC reports.

The spaces, reserved for those using the toilet, have appeared on main roads in Xi’an, close to the city’s public toilets.

Girlfriend-hiring app gets New Year boost

A girlfriend-hiring app in China has seen a spike in demand as men look to please their parents while at home to toast the Chinese New Year.

During the holiday, which begins on Friday, single people are often subjected to tough lectures from relatives about the importance of marriage.

An explosion in smartphone use in recent years means a single person can now pay for a date through a handful of mobile apps, with just a few clicks, including Hire Me Plz, which says it’s had 1,000 people sign up for dates for the New Year break.

Vegetable-themed account looks to trump Donald

A bizarre new Twitter account has proved a hit online – by seeking to trump the new president of the US.

@HalfOnionInABag, which has a profile picture of the vegetable in a freezer bag, wants to get more Twitter followers than Doland Trump.

The account has already attracted hundreds of thousands of followers, but is still some way short of @realDonaldTrump who has 22.4 million.

Polish town to send iconic car to Tom Hanks

A Polish town is preparing to give an iconic Soviet-era car to US actor Tom Hanks.

Hanks posted pictures of the Polski Fiat 126p while he was in Budapest last year during the shooting of Inferno, the film based on Dan Brown’s novel.

After seeing the photos, Monika Jaskolska from Bielsko-Biala – the town in southern Poland where the cars were made – organised a collection to help buy one for Hanks.

The vehicle is currently being renovated, before being sent to Los Angeles.

The car is the iconic Polish version of the Fiat 500 and was one of the most popular vehicles in Hungary and Poland during Soviet times.


- Help us by catching deadly spiders, urges zookeeper

- Making sure it’s made in Italy

- Pope orders resignation over condom row

- Swedes eco-friendly beyond the grave

- Chinese city tries to provide relief to toilet-needing drivers

- Girlfriend-hiring app gets new year boost

- Vegetable-themed account looks to trump Donald

- Polish town to send iconic car to Tom Hanks