German parties near coalition deal

Germany moves toward a new coalition government after major concessions by Angela Merkel

German parties near coalition deal

Christian von Stetten, a lawmaker from Ms. Merkel's own Christian Democrats (CDU), said the allocation of Cabinet posts, and the Finance Ministry in particular, had been "a political mistake". Schulz had said shortly after the election last September that he wouldn't join another grand coalition, insisting the party would instead now "renew itself" in opposition.

Former European Parliament speaker and leader of the German Social Democrat party (SPD) Martin Schulz announced today he will abandon his plan to serve as German foreign minister, seeking to end a party row over his role and boost support among members for a new "grand coalition" with Angela Merkel's conservatives.

Schulz had originally said he would not take a job in a government led by Merkel but then said on Wednesday he wanted to take the helm at the foreign ministry - a move for which he was widely criticized.

Punch-drunk shares off two-month lows
On currency markets, the dollar rose 0.3 per cent against a basket of currencies but fell nearly half a per cent to the yen. On Wednesday, benchmark 10-year notes last fell 18/32 in price to yield 2.834 percent, from 2.766 percent late on Tuesday.

The shock announcement comes just days after Merkel's conservatives and the SPD agreed to form a coalition government.

A survey by pollsters Civey found this week that around 60 percent of SPD supporters would back the party entering government once again.

The result of the vote is expected to be announced on March 4.

Jaish-e-Mohammad militants attack army camp in Jammu
Afzal Guru was secretly hanged and buried in Delhi's Tihar jail on February 9, 2013 for his role in 2001 parliament attack case. The attack could have been worse given the fact that the residential area has a school inside as well.

There is little chance they will block it, but the gathering will show off just how much Merkel's star has faded among a base that has always been loyal to the hilt, as a growing volume of grumbling has made clear since this week.

"I know it wasn't an easy decision for him", Nahles told reporters in her home village of Weiler in western Germany, saying Schulz deserved respect and recognition for stepping aside so as not to jeopardise the party vote on the coalition.

For the German press, such open resistance to Merkel is a sign that the long-serving leader could be on the way out.

Flawed US policy to make world's nuclear peril greater — Interview
China is now showing the world it is preparing for an inevitable nuclear war on the Korean peninsula. Here is a common-sense approach to the nuclear threat from Iran and North Korea.

Gabriel is still in office in a caretaker capacity while the proposed coalition deal is put to a referendum of SPD members. "But her farewell to power has begun, and thereby the debate about her succession", news weekly Der Spiegel commented.

Latest News