Tuesday 31 March, 2020

Countdown to the German elections: 8 weeks to go

News Desk
Published: 29 July 2017 Saturday, 05:22  AM

Countdown to the German elections: 8 weeks to go

Bonn, 29 July (deutschenews24.de/dpa)- German Chancellor ANGELA MERKEL displayed her confidence in her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party`s 17-point lead in the polls by heading off on her annual vacation on Tuesday, just eight weeks before the election.


Her main challenger, MARTIN SCHULZ of the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), travelled to Italy on Thursday to advocate for a fair distribution of refugees across Europe.


The former European Parliament president has seized on the refugee issue in a bid to dent the CDU`s lead by demonstrating his skills at solving problems on the European stage.




According to a poll released by the Infratest dimap polling institute on Thursday, Merkel`s CDU/CSU conservative political bloc has the largest lead over rivals in months, with 40 per cent of the vote.


The SPD remained at 23-per-cent support, while the environmentalist Greens and the business-friedly Free Democrats (FDP) won 8 per cent each, according to the poll.


The survey showed the right-wing Alternative for Germany (AfD) winning 9 per cent of the vote, meaning the anti-immigrant party would enter the Bundestag parliament for the first time.




The SPD is due to unveil details of its election campaign on Tuesday in Berlin.


On Sunday, Cem Oezdemir, the head of the Greens, will give a summer interview to public broadcaster ZDF in which he will discuss some of his party`s policies.




Germany`s political parties jumped in on a debate about potential sanctions against Turkey over its detention of human rights activist Peter Steudtner on terrorism-related charges.


Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel of the SPD, who announced that travel advisories to Turkey would be sharpened and government export guarantees reviewed, has seen his popularity rise as a result.