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GERMAN ELECTIONS 2017

Angela Merkel stresses migrants, Islam in first Bundestag address of new government

In the first major speech of her new term, German Chancellor Angela Merkel struck a conciliatory tone on immigration while offering an inclusive message on Islam. “Germany can do it,” she said, and “we are all Germany.” Jefferson Chase reports. Wednesday 21 March was the first time Angela Merkel addressed the Bundestag after the unprecedentedly long and difficult process of …

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Angela Merkel re-elected as German chancellor for fourth term

Germany’s parliament has elected Angela Merkel as the country’s new leader. The conservative Merkel will govern in a grand coalition with the Social Democrats. But the vote was much closer than expected. Merkel’s election by Germany’s lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, on Wednesday ends 171 days of waiting after Germany’s national election on September 24, 2017. Merkel was elected …

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German President Steinmeier officially proposes Merkel as chancellor

After months of political upheaval, Chancellor Angela Merkel is now set for the final step before her fourth term. Merkel told the press Monday morning that many issues required the government to “start working soon.” German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Monday (5 March) formally proposed Chancellor Angela Merkel be re-elected to her post, ending months of uncertainty following the German …

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Germany: SPD members approve coalition with Merkel’s conservatives

More than five months after Germans went to polls at the 24 September 2017 national election, Germany will finally be getting a new government. The final hurdle was cleared when the Social Democratic Party (SPD) members approved the coalition deal party leaders had negotiated with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU/CSU. Sixty-six percent of party members who voted supported a continuation …

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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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