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GERMAN ELECTIONS 2017

Germany: SPD members vote on coalition agreement with CDU/CSU

A postal vote among some 450,000 German Social Democratic Party (SPD) members has begun in order to get their approval for another ‘Grand Coalition’ led by Chancellor Angela Merkel. Deadline for voting is 2 March with the result expected on 4 March. SPD’s youth and left wings are fiercely opposed to another governing coalition with Merkel. “We were against this …

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Two-thirds of SPD supporters back German grand coalition

Two-thirds of supporters of Germany’s Social Democrats (SPD) back forming a coalition government with Angela Merkel’s conservatives, an opinion poll published on Friday shows. The poll conducted by Kantar Emnid for the Funke group of regional newspapers showed that 66 percent want a “grand coalition” and only 30 percent favour new elections, while 78 percent of supporters of the conservatives …

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Germany: What you should know about the coalition deal

After protracted talks, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU/CSU bloc reached a deal for a new coalition government with the centre-left Social Democrats on Wednesday. If approved by the SPD’s 460,000 members, the deal would end Germany’s longest period without a government since the Second World War. Here are the key points agreed in the draft coalition contract: Health insurance The …

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Germany: Angela Merkel finally reaches coalition deal with SPD

The conservatives and Social Democrats have finally managed to settle on a coalition agreement 136 days after the federal election. Negotiators from the Christian Democratic Union (CDU); their Bavarian partners, the Christian Social Union (CSU); and the centre-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) have finally hashed out a contract for a new grand coalition government — probably ensuring that Angela Merkel …

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Germany’s Social Democrats back coalition talks with Merkel in narrow vote

Talks can now begin on ending months of political deadlock after members of the centre-left SPD voted to open formal talks on a “grand coalition” with the Chancellor Angela Merkel-led conservative CDU/CSU bloc. “Today, it’s not just about whether we’re entering coalition negotiations. No. Rather today we finally decide which direction our country and Europe are going. And that’s why …

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Germany: Main points of coalition blueprint agreed by CDU/CSU and SPD

Germany inched toward a new government Friday as Chancellor Angela Merkel and the centre-left Social Democrats agreed to move ahead with formal talks to build a coalition. Merkel’s Christian Democrats, her Bavarian CSU allies and Martin Schulz’s SPD announced a policy blueprint for a future coalition government. If the three parties can agree on the details, and avoid pitfalls along the …

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Majority of Germans think Merkel’s best days are over

Although 67 percent of Germans think their chancellor is no longer the leader she once was, they don’t see many alternatives. According to a new survey, three-quarters of the country think it’s time for a change at her CDU party, reports Elizabeth Schumacher. About two-thirds of Germans believe that Chancellor Angela Merkel’s best times are behind her, according to a …

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German politicians call for tougher stance on asylum seekers

Ahead of this week’s new round of coalition talks between Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU/CSU and the SPD, leading Bavarian politicians are demanding tougher measures against asylum seekers, including mandatory age checks, speedier deportations and benefit cuts. Charlotte Hauswedell reports. The interior minister of Bavaria, Joachim Herrmann (CSU), has reiterated that deportations must be carried out more effectively, especially in …

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Germany: Merkel pledges quick end to political limbo in New Year’s address

Germany’s chancellor has warned that differing opinions threaten to tear “a rift” in society in a time of political uncertainty. She called for more mutual respect and understanding, promising to seek an end to Germany’s political limbo by forming a new government as quickly as possible. Dr Angela Merkel used her televised New Year’s address on Sunday to call on …

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German president calls for hope amidst political uncertainty

President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has urged Germans not to lose hope in these times of uncertainty, as Germany grapples with finding a new government. He insisted people could remain optimistic, reports Sabine Kinkartz | DW It’s been three months since Germany’s parliamentary elections, but the country finds itself in a political quagmire: the previous government remains in charge on an interim …

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Germany: SPD votes to open coalition talks with CDU/CSU

Leaders of Germany’s CDU, CSU and SPD are set to meet next week to discuss a roadmap for upcoming coalition talks, following approval by the SPD party congress on Thursday to allow talks on forming a new ‘Grand Coalition’. Germany’s centre-left Social Democrats agreed Thursday to open talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU/CSU on whether to renew their governing …

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Germany: Social Democrats ready for talks to end political crisis

The Social Democrats (SPD) said Friday that they are ready to hold talks that may help caretaker Chancellor Angela Merkel resolve a deep political crisis without calling new elections. “The SPD is of the firm conviction that there must be talks,” its general secretary Hubertus Heil said after an eight-hour, late-night meeting headed by SPD leader Martin Schulz. “The SPD …

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German president calls on parties to make coalition possible

Frank-Walter Steinmeier has taken Germany’s political parties to task after talks to form a new government broke down. The German president says coalition talks must continue amidst speculation there could be a new vote. Deutsche Welle’s Jefferson Chase (Berlin) reports. German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier did not announce any concrete steps in a brief statement delivered in Berlin on Monday after …

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BREAKING! German coalition talks collapse after FDP walks out

Germany’s Free Democrats have called off coalition talks with Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU bloc and the Greens. FDP head Christian Lindner said that after weeks of negotiations the parties could not find a “basis of trust.” Germany was thrust into uncertainty early Monday morning after a month of four-party exploratory talks about forming a so-called Jamaica coalition collapsed. Chancellor Angela Merkel …

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Germany: Merkel confident coalition talks are on track despite divisions

The chancellor has said that her CDU party, the Greens and the business-friendly FDP will have an initial agreement ready this week. It is nearly two months since Germany held its general election. Elizabeth Schumacher reports. German Chancellor Angela Merkel appeared optimistic on Sunday that despite major policy differences – her Christian Democratic Party (CDU), the Greens and the pro-business …

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Germany: Coalition talks for new government proving difficult

Threats, name-calling and a whole lot of dramatic posturing: talks among four fractious parties to form a new government under German Chancellor Angela Merkel have proved more fiery than fruitful so far. September’s inconclusive general election left the camps, which span the political spectrum, scrambling to form a stable government under Merkel, with the outcome of negotiations highly uncertain. “We …

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