02:12 GMT +311 December 2019
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    In this May 15, 2018 file photo German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, talks with German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, right, during the first day of the budget 2018 debate at the parliament Bundestag at the Reichstag building in Berlin

    CDU Party Leader Urges Seehofer to Step Down After Merkel

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    On Monday, Angela Merkel announced that her fourth term as German Chancellor would be her last one and that she would resign as leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party. According to her, the decision was made this past summer.

    Tobias Hans, German Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party prime minister in the western state of Saarland, has urged the country's Christian Social Union (CSU) party leader Horst Seehofer to step down.

    "The fact is that [German Chancellor] Angela Merkel has given an example of how to take responsibility after a poor election result. Angela Merkel has managed to deliver a self-determined departure as party leader, this is also my wish for colleague Horst Seehofer," Hans said in an interview with the Die Welt newspaper.

    READ MORE: 'Germans Waking Up, Turning Away From Merkel's CDU by the Millions' – Politician

    His remarks came a day after Merkel said that she would not participate in the CDU leadership contest in December and would step down as federal chancellor in 2021.

    She revealed that she'd made the decision to drop out of the competition for the party leadership before the parliament’s summer recess.

    "I do know this hasn't been done before, it is unprecedented, but I believe it offers far more opportunities than risks for the country, for the German government and for my party," Merkel said at a press conference after a closed-door meeting with her fellow CDU members.

    READ MORE: Merkel's Party in 'Absolutely Fragile' Situation After Bavarian Elections — Prof

    She stressed that it was "time to start a new chapter," as she has taken responsibility for her fourth-term government's poor start and voiced a need for changes. Merkel admitted that her party would have secured better results in Hesse's regional election if not for its performance at the federal level.

    Volker Bouffier, Minister-President of the German state of Hesse, where the CDU secured victory in Sunday's election but faced a 10-percent loss of the votes in comparison to 2013, praised Merkel's move as a "noble, right and strong decision."

    He was echoed by French President Emanuel Macron who said that Merkel's decision to quit "deserves respect" and that the chancellor's 13-year-rule was "very courageous".

    Right now, an array of CDU politicians are reportedly willing to succeed Merkel as party leader, including CDU party secretary general Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, and Health Minister Jens Spahn.


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    leadership, parliament, competition, result, decision, Christian Social Union (CSU), Christian Democratic Union (CDU), Horst Seehofer, Angela Merkel, Germany
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