World Bulletin / News Desk
German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced Sunday that she will run for a fourth term in next year's elections.
Speaking at a press conference in Berlin, following an executive committee meeting of her Christian Democrats (CDU), Merkel said she has decided to stand for re-election in 2017.
“These elections will be more difficult than ever before, at least since the unification of Germany,” Merkel told reporters, acknowledging widespread criticism of her open-door policy for refugees.
She cited the polarization of German society and security fears due to the refugee crisis as examples of important domestic challenges.
Merkel also expressed concern over growing support for right-wing populist movements in Europe and Germany, but underlined that she will continue to defend liberal, democratic values.
“Democracy, freedoms, respect for the rule of law, the dignity of each human being irrespective of his or her origin, skin color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or political opinion. These have guided my efforts, and I will continue to support them again and again,” she stressed.
Merkel’s Christian Democrats have suffered heavy defeats in recent regional elections, while the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) had record gains, mainly through the use of anti-refugee propaganda.
Germany accepted a record 890,000 refugees last year, most of them Syrians, Iraqis, and Afghans.Last Mod: 21 Kasım 2016, 00:32