Merkel: Exploratory talks to form coalition will last several weeks
German Chancellor Angela Merkel told journalists that she expects talks to discuss the possibilities for a new government coalition to last several weeks before actual negotiations begin, news agency Reuters reports. The lengthy talks were down to the “unusual political constellation” after the federal election, where the CDU, CSU, FDP and Green Party aim to form an alliance. Merkel added that "we will not start putting down any red lines now. There are going to be enough conflicts anyway, nobody has any illusions about that,” writes Deutsche Welle in a separate article. The chancellor said she did not see the result in the Lower Saxony state election as weakening her party’s position in forming a federal government coalition. The CDU/CSU will start talks with the FDP and the Green Party in separate meetings on 18 October, the FDP and the Greens one day later. All four parties will meet for the first time on 20 October. Germany’s climate targets, the future of coal-fired power generation and other energy-related topics will likely play a big role in the talks.
For background, read the CLEW article Coalition watch – The making of a new German government and the CLEW factsheets The long road to a new government coalition in Germany and Climate & energy stumbling blocks for Jamaica-coalition talks.