Don't miss




US Supreme Court Justice Breyer urges Americans to 'participate in public life'

Read more


Syria's Armenian minority building new life in Yerevan

Read more


Film show: On the red carpet for the world premiere of 'Fantastic Beasts 2'

Read more


Chinese 're-education' camps: Muslim Uighurs speak out

Read more


Secret screenings: Director Sam Abbas brings LGBTQ film to Middle Eastern audience

Read more


Onion-gate? Australian hardware store sparks anger over changes to hot dog stand

Read more


Trump's anti-Macron Twitter tirade

Read more


Men's health in 'Movember': Raising awareness of male wellbeing

Read more


She's alive: Discovering Mary Shelley, 200 years after Frankenstein was published

Read more


Germany's Merkel defends 'painful' coalition deal against critical party members

© Britta Pedersen / dpa / AFP | German Chancellor and leader of the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, Angela Merkel arrives at a parliamentary group meeting in Berlin on February 7, 2018.

Video by Emmanuelle CHAZE


Latest update : 2018-02-11

German Chancellor Angela Merkel pushed back Sunday against critics within her Christian Democratic Union party of the governing coalition deal reached with Germany's main center-left party.

Merkel's conservative bloc secured an agreement to form a new coalition government with the Social Democrats Wednesday, ending months of political gridlock.

The chancellor acknowledged in a Sunday interview with ZDF public television that it "was painful" to hand the powerful finance ministry to the Social Democrats.

"We sure did pay a price for a stable government," Merkel said.

But she added that it would have been "irresponsible" to allow the negotiations to collapse.

The deal to end Germany's four-month, postelection political impasse would see Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative party and its Bavaria-only sister party, the Christian Social Union, continue their "grand coalition" of the last four years with the center-left Social Democratic Party.

The last major hurdle is winning approval from the Social Democrats' skeptical members, who will vote on the agreement.

"After 12 years, a lot of people would like some change" - Ulrike Franke, Fellow, European Council on Foreign Relations

'A tough blow'

The Social Democrats are widely viewed to have secured a good deal in the coalition negotiations, emerging with control of the powerful finance ministry, the foreign and labor ministries and three other ministries it already led.

Several prominent members of Merkel's party have criticized the chancellor in recent days for handing too many ministries to the Social Democrats.

Jens Spahn, a leading CDU party board member, told Austria's Presse am Sonntag newspaper that the loss of the finance ministry was "was a tough blow."

Others called for a renewal of the Christian Democrat leadership, a barely disguised push for Merkel's replacement.

The governor of Schleswig-Holstein state, Daniel Guenther, said earlier in daily Die Welt that "we need new faces" in the Cabinet.

However, Merkel, who has led Germany since 2005, said she plans to run the country as chancellor for the full four-year term.

"These four years are what I promised," she said. "I belong to those people who keep their promises."


Date created : 2018-02-11


    'A sense of international responsibility' drives Germany's coalition talks

    Read more


    Schulz drops foreign minister plans to boost support for Merkel coalition deal

    Read more


    Germany's SPD backs coalition talks with Merkel's conservatives

    Read more