Written by Staff Writer
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has officially agreed a coalition deal with five other parties.
The agreement creates a short-term government, with the aim of forming a long-term coalition in September, and may be enough to keep Merkel’s successor as chancellor, Martin Schulz, in power.
“We have taken a critical first step, we have now reached agreement with five parties and we are a step closer to the government of the federal republic,” said Schulz at a press conference alongside Merkel on Sunday.
The Germans have a lot to do now. Details to come. But as @diplomatsc (@diplomatsc) said: “If the agreement is confirmed, there will be no shortage of activity in the coming weeks, Chancellor #Merkel said. #Germany #ChaiderRuhnken”
Schulz led the Social Democrats into entering the “grand coalition” government with Merkel’s conservative camp following September’s election, but then resigned after his party suffered a dismal showing in December regional elections.
Angela Merkel’s conservatives are comprised of her party, the Christian Democratic Union, and the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU). The parties are joined by the liberal Free Democratic Party and the Greens, each of which entered into a coalition agreement with Merkel’s conservative bloc on Sunday.
With junior partner in Merkel’s “grand coalition” AfD, holding 12.6%, the German government will be a majority government.
In the medium term, the agreement outlines a federal government to replace the current government of 18 months, under which the SPD have served as a junior partner.