Thursday, 15 November 2018

Merkel says she plans to govern for full four-year term

Angela Merkel

BERLIN: German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she plans to serve another full four-year term, despite growing criticism within her conservative ranks of the sweeping concessions she made to hold onto power.

The veteran leader said that despite the sniping over a poor election result and the loss of key ministries in a fresh coalition deal, she felt no loss of authority and wanted to stay at the helm of Europe s biggest economy until 2021.

“I understand the disappointment,” she said, but stressed that she “naturally” planned to stick with her pledge to stay on for another four years, rather than make way for a successor before the end of the term.

“I am a person who keeps what they have promised,” she told public broadcaster ZDF.

Merkel won September elections but fell short of a clear majority, in large part due to the rise of the far-right, anti-immigration AfD which took votes away from all major parties.

After a gruelling marathon of negotiations, she managed on Wednesday to forge another “grand coalition” deal with the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), who however extracted a high price.

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