Angela Merkel

Regional News • Europe • Germany
German CDU elects Armin Laschet as new chairman
German CDU elects Armin Laschet as new chairman
Credit: Tetzemann / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons CC0 Waiver)

North Rhine-Westphalia's Minister President Armin Laschet is to succeed Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer as the new CDU leader. The 59-year-old prevailed in a runoff against former parliamentary group leader Friedrich Merz at the party's digital convention on Saturday.

In a first reaction, Armin Laschet said, "First of all, I thank you for the great trust." He said he was aware of his responsibility. He wants to ensure that the CDU/CSU provides the next chancellor that will succeed Angela Merkel.

Business • Economy
Angela Merkel criticizes Trump's social media ban
Angela Merkel
Angela Merkel Credit: Bundesregierung/Denzel (Public Domain)

German government criticizes the permanent blocking of Trump's social media accounts. Merkel pointed out that freedom of expression as a fundamental right should only be restricted by legislation and not by companies.

In principle, the German government condemns statements inciting hatred and violence and is in favor of regulating social networks.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced new national lockdown measures until the 10th of January.
Alexanderplatz, Berlin, during the Covid-19 outbreak in April 2020
Alexanderplatz, Berlin, during the Covid-19 outbreak in April 2020 Credit: Neomicro (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The German chancellor has announced the closure of stores, schools and daycare centres in the run-up to Christmas to stem the surge in coronavirus cases. The new rules will come into effect from Wednesday, December 16th and will last until January 10th

According to the new measures, retail will close except for essential goods. There will be a ban on fireworks ahead of New Year’s Eve, hair salons, schools and daycare centres will also close. Takeaway food and food delivery is still possible, but takeaway cannot be eaten near the place of purchase

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Germany extends partial lockdown until January 10th
Berlin Alexanderplatz Berlin 11 during the first Covid-19 lockdown
Berlin Alexanderplatz Berlin 11 during the first Covid-19 lockdown Credit: Neomicro (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced that the country's partial lockdown will be extended until at least January 10th, aiming to reduce the seven-day incidence (confirmed Covid-19 infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days) to less than 50.

Hotels, eateries, bars and cultural and leisure facilities will remain closed and gatherings will now be limited to a maximum of five people from two households. During December 23 and January 1, up to ten people will be able to gather to allow for families to celebrate.

"If the infection situation continues to develop as in the last days, we will meet again on January 4th and the states are extending the directive (for a shutdown) to January 10th," Merkel said following a five-hour meeting with the 16 German state leaders on Wednesday.

Regional News • Europe • European Union
Germany, Italy, France urge to shut ski slopes until Jan 10; EU waves off
Germany, Italy, France urge to shut ski slopes until Jan 10; EU waves off
Credit: unsplash/https://unsplash.com/photos/vZz5RKpVIyg

Germany joins Italy and France in their demand to ban ski resorts from opening until January 10, stating it would be a "great risk, even crazy, to open ski-slopes."

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and multiple prime ministers addressed an appeal to all citizens to refrain from "all not absolutely necessary professional and private journeys, in particular, tourist journeys to foreign countries, especially considering the start of the ski season."

"The Federal Government is asked to come to coordinated regulations at European level in order to prevent ski tourism from being permitted before 10 January", the paper continues.

EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides opposes a Europe-wide ski ban over the Christmas holidays, saying that "there is no formula that applies to all EU countries because every country has a different situation."

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Motive unclear - car rams into entrance gate of the German Chancellery
Motive unclear - car rams into entrance gate of the German Chancellery
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter / Amichai Stein

One photo showed that the dark station wagon was standing directly in front of the closed gate in an otherwise cordoned-off area. Written there was "Stop the globalization policy", on the other side "You damned murderers of children and old people". According to the license plate, the car is registered in the district of Lippe in North Rhine-Westphalia. The motive is still unclear.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Angela Merkel says she is very worried about pandemic in Berlin
Angela Merkel
Angela Merkel Credit: European People's Party (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

The Covid-19 situation in Germany still concerns even with infection numbers not rising as fast as before, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday. The chancellor said she would have preferred to have agreed stricter rules at a meeting with federal and state leaders on Monday, adding she was apprehensive about the uncontrolled spread of coronavirus in some places, including the capital Berlin.

Merkel had proposed additional measures including making it mandatory to wear masks in schools and shrink class sizes, and urging citizens, and children, to limit social contacts to one household or friend.

Federal and state leaders postponed until November 25 a decision on further lockdown measures

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Merkel warns that Germany is "on the verge of losing control of virus"
Merkel warns that Germany is "on the verge of losing control of virus"
Credit: FinnishGovernment, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

German chancellor Angela Merkel has warned that Germany is "on the verge of losing control of its fight against the virus", telling her party in an internal meeting that "the situation is threatening" and that the country has "very, very difficult months ahead."

Germany has seen a steady increase of Covid-19 cases of the past weeks, reporting over 14,000 cases on October 24, the country's highest daily case count.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
The German Health Minister Jens Spahn tested positive for Covid-19
Jens Spahn
Jens Spahn Credit: Olaf Kosinsky (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 DE)

Jens Spahn, the German Health Minister, tested positive for Covid-19 and has gone into immediate isolation.

The healthy ministry confirmed all those in close contact with Spahn had been informed.

Members of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Cabinet, that have met Spahn earlier on Wednesday, will not be self-isolating.

According to a government spokesperson: "The Federal Cabinet meets in compliance with hygiene and distance rules, which aim to ensure that even if a person who later tests positive were to participate, quarantining of other or even all participants would not be necessary."

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Friedrich Merz 'regrets' controversial gay chancellor remarks
Friedrich Merz
Friedrich Merz Credit: Olaf Kosinsky (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

German politician Friedrich Merz says he now "regrets" comments made when asked whether he would have reservations if an LGBT+ chancellor were to lead Germany.

During a video interview for the Bild newspaper, Merz replied to the question with: "No. Concerning the question of sexual orientation, as long as it is within the law and does not affect children — which at this point, for me, would be an absolute limit — it is not an issue for public discussion."

Merz is the leading candidate for the position of chair of the centre-right Christian Democrats (CDU). Whoever is selected for the role would likely become the party's candidate to replace Angela Merkel as chancellor.

Merz' answer sparked an outcry from German politicians, especially as one of his rivals for the position of CDU chair, Health Minister Jens Spahn, is openly gay.

Another gay politician, deputy chair of the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), Kevin Kühnert tweeted: "This is how someone works who cannot hide the fact that he cannot deal with the normalization of homosexuality."

Regional News • World
Merkel pleads for expanded UN Security Council

On the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, the German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) invoked its unity and willingness to reform. "In the end, the United Nations can only be as good as its members are united," Merkel said in a video message on Monday evening in New York for the UN anniversary ceremony.

She stated that the UN must continue to develop in order to meet the global challenges of the 21st century.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
German opposition pressures Merkel to end Nord Stream 2 support after Navalny poisoning
German opposition pressures Merkel to end Nord Stream 2 support after Navalny poisoning
Credit: Russian Presidential Executive Office (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The German Green party is urging Angela Merkel to use the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to press the Kremlin over the poisoning of the Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Katrin Göring-Eckardt, the Green's co-chair, said: "This openly attempted murder through the Kremlin’s mafia-like structures should not just worry us but needs to have real consequences."

At her annual Summer press conference, Angela Merkel stated, "Our opinion is that Nord Stream 2 should be completed ... I don't think it is appropriate to link this business-operated project with the Navalny question."

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Merkel condemns 'shameful' Covid-19 parliament protest
Angela Merkel
Angela Merkel Credit: Philipp (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

On Monday, the German Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned as "shameful" an attempt by protesters angry at Covid-19 restrictions to storm parliament, saying they had abused the right to demonstrate peacefully.

Several hundred people tried to get into the Reichstag building during a rally against coronavirus rules in Berlin on Saturday.

Regional News • Americas • Brazil
Merkel warns Amazon deforestation threatens EU-Mercosur deal
Angela Merkel meets Emmanuel Macron
Angela Merkel meets Emmanuel Macron Credit: Bundeskanzlerin (Public Domain)

The German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated she has "considerable doubts" about backing the EU-Mercorsur deal due to environmental concerns. The chancellor met Thursday climate campaigners in Berlin.

Steffen Seibert, spokesperson for the German government, told reports that "Serious questions have arisen due to the ongoing environmental concerns "as to whether the implementation of the agreement in the intended spirit would be guaranteed at present."

The trade deal between the EU and the Mercosur states of Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay, would create the world's largest free-trade zone.

Climate & Environment
Climate activists state that "We don't have leaders who are treating this crisis as a crisis" after meeting Angela Merkel

The climate activists Greta Thunberg from Sweden, Anuna de Wever and Adélaïde Charliér from Belgium and Lisa Neubauer from Germany have met the German chancellor Angela Merkel for a 90-minute conversation.

According to Neubauer, they talked about international politics, CO2 pricing and trade agreements. She stated that "it became very clear that we are looking at the issue from different perspectives" and Thunberg said that "we have discussed some demands, but it is complicated".

De Wever stated that during the conversation there main request had been that "what we want are leaders" as "we don't have leaders who are treating this crisis as a crisis".

Regional News • Europe • Russia
Russian opposition leader Nawalny to be treated in Germany
Russian opposition leader Nawalny to be treated in Germany
Credit: Evgeny Feldman / Novaya Gazeta (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

The German chancellor Angela Merkel has offered to treat Nawalny in a German hospital. According to his spokeswoman, he has been poisoned. Activists now want to have him flown out to Berlin for treatment as he is currently in a coma.

The Charité in Berlin has promised to treat Nawalny, and currently, the necessary flight permits are still being obtained. Nawalny is to be brought from Omsk, where he is in hospital, by a plane chartered in Germany. Earlier, the newspaper "Bild" had reported on the plans.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
The German government denies recent call between Merkel-Lukashenko happened
President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko
President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko Credit: Serge Serebro, Vitebsk Popular News (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Reuters report that a spokesman for the German government denied that any phone call had taken place between Chancellor Angela Merkel and Belarus's Alexander Lukashenko since the August 9 election.

Earlier Monday Interfax news agency reported Alexander Lukashenko said he received a phone call on Sunday from the German Chancellor.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Social Democratic Party of Germany nominates finance minister as chancellor candidate to try to succeed Merkel after 2021 elections
Social Democratic Party of Germany nominates finance minister as chancellor candidate to try to succeed Merkel after 2021 elections
Credit: Olaf Kosinsky (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 DE)

The Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) has announced that Olaf Scholz, currently finance minister in the cabinet under Angela Merkel, will headline the election efforts of his party with the goal of becoming chancellor after the general elections in 2021.

Angela Merkel has previously announced that the current term will be her last one. The SPD is the first party to nominate their front-runner for the elections.

Regional News • Europe • European Union
Merkel: Approval of EU Covid-19 recovery fund this week unclear
Merkel: Approval of EU Covid-19 recovery fund this week unclear
Credit: FinnishGovernment / © Bernhard Ludewig / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

According to the German Chancellor Angela Merkel it is unclear if the European Union will manage to agree on a multi-year budget and a recovery fund for the economic consequences from Covid-19 during this week.

She stated that "What we want now, the recovery fund or the next generation EU program, it has to be staggering, something special. Because the task at hand is huge, and therefore the answer has to be big as well".

Regional News • World
Angela Merkel criticizes world leaders that promote "lies and disinformation"
U.S. President Donald J. Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel
U.S. President Donald J. Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel Credit: The White House (Public Domain)

The German chancellor Angela Merkel of the conservative party CDU has stated that the limits of "fact-denying populism" by world leaders have been exposed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Merkel added that these leaders promote "lies and disinformation" and said that "We are seeing at the moment that the pandemic can't be fought with lies and disinformation, and neither can it be with hatred and agitation".