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Pope Francis talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Vatican
Pope Francis talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a private audience at the Vatican in Vatican City on May 18, 2013. Merkel made a quick trip to the Vatican and joined the pope in expressing concern for the victims of the economic crisis in Europe. UPI/Stefano Spaziani
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Angela Dorothea Merkel (German:  ( listen); née Kasner in 1954) is the current Chancellor of Germany (since 22 November 2005). Merkel, elected to the Bundestag (German Parliament) from Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, has been the chairwoman of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) since 2000, and chairwoman of the CDU-CSU (Christian Social Union) parliamentary coalition from 2002 to 2005.

From 2005 to 2009 she led a grand coalition with the Christian Social Union (CSU), its Bavarian sister party, and the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), formed after the 2005 federal election on 22 November 2005. In the elections of 27 September 2009, her party, the CDU, obtained the largest share of the votes, and formed a coalition government with the CSU and the Free Democratic Party (FDP). Her government was sworn in on 28 October 2009.

In 2007, Merkel was also President of the European Council and chaired the G8. She played a central role in the negotiation of the Treaty of Lisbon and the Berlin Declaration. In domestic policy, health care reform and problems concerning future energy development have thus far been major issues of her tenure.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Angela Merkel."
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