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German SPD's call for looser ties to Merkel seen as 'dangerous'

Europe
12.12.2017
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Berlin (dpa) - Social Democrat (SPD) leader Martin Schulz‘s suggestion to form a coalition with German Chancellor Angela Merkel‘s conservatives while allowing the centre-left party to work with the opposition is "dangerous," an incoming state premier said Tuesday.

Schulz, reluctant to enter another coalition as junior partner after a record-low election result for the SPD in September, has proposed an unprecedented arrangement that would see the SPD and the conservatives agree on core issues, but allow his party to dissent and work with opposition parties on others.

"The SPD has squandered a lot of trust and should now return to seriousness," Michael Kretschmer, a senior member of Merkel‘s conservative Christian Democrats (CDU), told Deutschlandfunk radio.

"This form of doing politics may have been successful in the European parliament, (...) but in Germany it would be very dangerous," he said, referring to Schulz‘s tenure as head of the EU legislature.

Talks between Merkel‘s conservatives and two smaller parties collapsed unexpectedly several weeks ago, leaving the SPD as the only viable candidate with which to achieve a majority in parliament.

The CDU could also form a minority government, but Merkel has argued in favour of a stable coalition in light of right-wing electoral gains in Germany and instability in the European Union.

Merkel and Schulz will meet late Wednesday for a session intended to pave the way for formal coalition talks.

 

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