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Germany: Merkel addresses CDU ahead of leadership change03:45

Germany: Merkel addresses CDU ahead of leadership change

Germany, Berlin
January 15, 2021 at 19:35 GMT +00:00 · Published

Angela Merkel made her final welcome speech at a Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party conference as Chancellor on Friday, in a digital event hosted from Berlin.

Merkel began by recognising the critical issues that the next CDU leader would have to grapple with upon replacing current party head, Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.

"We are living through multiple, fundamental changes, and all simultaneously," the chancellor said. Digitalisation, climate change and demographic shifts and the problems they would pose were the three central themes, she explained.

She then stressed the importance of the choices being made by the CDU, saying they would be instrumental in solving these problems.

"I hope that during this party conference the correct decisions for the future are made. That will first and foremost be decisions about personnel, I hope that a team is chosen that carries the torch of our proud history as a people's party, and along with our members find the right answers for the questions of the future," she emphasised.

The CDU elected current North Rhine-Westphalia Minister-President Armin Laschet as the new party leader on Saturday, after he defeated rivals Friedrich Merz and Norbert Rottgen.

Germany: Merkel addresses CDU ahead of leadership change03:45
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Angela Merkel made her final welcome speech at a Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party conference as Chancellor on Friday, in a digital event hosted from Berlin.

Merkel began by recognising the critical issues that the next CDU leader would have to grapple with upon replacing current party head, Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.

"We are living through multiple, fundamental changes, and all simultaneously," the chancellor said. Digitalisation, climate change and demographic shifts and the problems they would pose were the three central themes, she explained.

She then stressed the importance of the choices being made by the CDU, saying they would be instrumental in solving these problems.

"I hope that during this party conference the correct decisions for the future are made. That will first and foremost be decisions about personnel, I hope that a team is chosen that carries the torch of our proud history as a people's party, and along with our members find the right answers for the questions of the future," she emphasised.

The CDU elected current North Rhine-Westphalia Minister-President Armin Laschet as the new party leader on Saturday, after he defeated rivals Friedrich Merz and Norbert Rottgen.

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