In Brief: Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer to step down as CDU leader, not run for chancellor

The announcement from the current Minister of Defense comes less than a week after the results of an election in the federal state of Thuringia sent shock waves through Germany.

Photo: CDU / Laurence Chaperon

 

CDU leader Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer announced on Monday she will not run for chancellor and will step down as leader of the Christian Democrats by the end of this year.

This announcement from Kramp-Karrenbauer comes less than a week after a shocking election in the federal state of Thuringia, when the CDU and far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) both supported an FDP politician for minister president.

“I stand for a CDU that clearly rejects any form of direct or indirect cooperation with the AFD and the Federal Executive Board greatly emphasized this today,” Kramp-Karrenbauer said.

She added that working with die Linke, Germany’s Left party, is also not an option. Kramp-Karrenbauer said she will continue serving as Defense Minister at the request of Chancellor Angela Merkel.

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By early Monday morning, the Berlin Fire Department reported responding to 55 weather-related incidents – among them, fallen branches, trees and scaffolding – as a result of Storm Sabine.

German Weather Service spokesman Andreas Friedrich said the storm largely spared Berlin and Brandenburg.

“Berlin was a little lucky because in this area of Germany, we have the lowest wind speeds recorded in comparison to other parts of Germany, like at the western parts, and also at the southern parts Monday morning,” Friedrich said.

With that said, Friedrich noted there could be wind gusts of up to 100 kilometers per hour in Berlin and Brandeburg on Tuesday. The German Weather Service predicts wind will be even stronger in coastal areas, including at the North Sea and the Baltic Sea.

Friedrich said calmer weather is expected from Thursday onwards.

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On Monday, there was good news out of the DRK-Klinik in Berlin-Köpenick:

The Berlin Senate Department for Health confirmed the 20 people who returned to Berlin from Wuhan, China, tested negative for the new coronavirus.

The 16 adults and four children will remain in quarantine for the next two weeks.

According to the Federal Ministry of Health, 14 cases of the coronavirus have been documented in Germany as of Monday. Worldwide there have been more than 40,000 reported cases and more than 900 deaths.

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