Germany's SPD denies agreeing coalition talks with Angela Merkel

Jerome Frank
Декабря 4, 2017

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has rejected new elections and wanted to form a new government quickly, as a effect of the failed government coalition talks with the Free Democratic Party (FDP) and the Greens.

The chairman said the SPD's executive committee would discuss various options on Monday, and make a proposal which would be discussed at SPD's party conference from December 7 to 9 in Berlin.

Mr Schulz and Mrs Merkel met on Thursday night to discuss a possible new coalition or SPD support for a minority government, and initial reports suggested the talks had gone well.

After his party's disastrous result in the September 24 election Schultz had ruled out forming another so-called grand coalition with Merkel's Christian Democratic Union and Bavarian-only sister party, the Christian Social Union, like the one that has governed Germany for the last four years. Germany's Bild newspaper and the news agencies Reuters and DPA reported earlier on Friday that a deal had been reached to pursue the grand coalition option.

Merkel told the party conference that she wants to "come quickly to a government", adding that Germany must have a stable government, "but also a government that really advances the country". He said Social Democrat (SPD) leaders would make a proposal on Monday on how to proceed.

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Ahead of that congress, which will also decide whether to re-elect Schulz as chief of the SPD, the party's top brass has been careful to tread softly regarding its options. "We need a fresh start in the European Union", he said.

Merkel would have few problems getting her parliamentary group to go along with talks about extending their current collaboration with the Social Democrats, as there is broad consensus among conservatives that a grand coalition is the only way forward.

"I can clearly deny the media report about me having given the green light for grand coalition negotiations".

Meantime, she continues to head a caretaker government made up of her conservatives and the Social Democrats. "The fact we underlined today that we are prepared to enter such talks with the SPD shows that we're aiming to bring these talks to a successful conclusion".

"A positive response to Emmanuel Macron will be a key demand in any negotiation with the SPD".

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