Pro-business party OKs formal talks on new German government


Christian Lindner, parliamentary group leader and party leader of the FDP, comes to a joint meeting of the FDP federal executive and the newly elected members of the Bundestag in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Oct. 18, 2021. They will discuss the start of coalition negotiations with the SPD and the Greens. Earlier, the party executive committee had already met. (Paul Zinken/dpa via AP)

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December 25 2021 12:00 am

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s pro-business Free Democrats on Monday became the last of three parties to back the start of formal coalition talks on forming a new government.

The Free Democrats leader, Christian Lindner, said the party’s national executive unanimously agreed to take the step following weeks of informal talks with the center-left Social Democrats and the environmentalist Greens.

Lindner said the three parties hadn’t sought each other out ahead of the Sept. 26 election, “to put it diplomatically.”

“It’s also no surprise that there are big differences on matters of substance,” he said, adding that those involved would need show “a lot of tolerance and willingness to think anew. Therein lies a chance, though, to do good things for our country.”

In the election, the Social Democrats came first, ahead of outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel’s center-right Union bloc, and the Greens and Free Democrats came third and fourth. Merkel will stay on as a caretaker leader until Germany’s new coalition government is in place.


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