Members of the new German coalition government, including (from left)  Sigmar Gabriel, chairman of the SPD;  foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier; defence minister Ursula von der Leyen; and CDU leader and chancellor Angela Merkel (far right). Photograph: Seán Gallup/Getty Images

Asked in September how long she expected coalition negotiations to take, chancellor Angela Merkel joked that “Christmas comes sooner than you think”.A(...)

Angela Merkel, leader of the Christian Democratic Union, Horst Seehofer (left), leader of the Christian Social Union, with German transport minister Peter Ramsauer following preliminary talks with the SPD in Berlin yesterday. Photograph: Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters

Germany has moved one step closer to another grand coalition government after the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and Social Democratic Party (SPD) a(...)

The Green Party’s Juergen Trittin and Claudia Roth look out of a window during a break in preliminary coalition talks with the CDU party in Berlin on Tuesday. Photograph: Tobias Schwarz/Reuters

There was a whiff of Casablanca in Berlin yesterday as Germany’s Green Party left a coalition back door open to Angela Merkel and her Christian Democr(...)

Posters of lead candidiate of the German Free Democrats (FDP) Rainer Bruederle at FDP party headquarters  in Berlin, Germany. Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

German chancellor Angela Merkel’s ruling Christian Democrats (CDU) have warned supporters against switching allegiance to their ailing junior coalitio(...)