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    Angela Merkel Tag

    A week after voting against Israel at the United Nations, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel is proposing an ambitious plan to strengthen relations with the Erdogan regime in Turkey. Gabriel, who also serves as Germany's Vice Chancellor, wants an EU-wide customs union with Turkey, a move aimed at bringing the Muslim-majority country 'as close as possible to the bloc', media reports claim. The German proposal will treat Turkey, presently run by the Islamist strongman Recep Erdoğan, at par with Britain after it leaves the EU at the end of the ongoing Brexit negotiations.  President Erdogan, who took office in 2003, has assumed authoritarian powers by amending the country's constitution following a controversial referendum in April this year.  Since then, Erdogan has been busy purging the opponents of his regime from the military, judiciary and civil services.

    The European Union has launched disciplinary proceedings against Poland, accusing the county of breaching the EU's "core values" over a series of judicial reforms passed by the Polish parliament. The European Commission, the EU's executive body, triggered Article 7, also dubbed as the "Nuclear Option." The process could lead to economic sanctions and suspension of the country's voting rights within the EU's decision making bodies.

    The city of Mülheim in northwestern Germany cancelled its official Hanukkah festivities, citing 'security concerns,' German newspaper Bild Zeitung reported. All the outdoor Hanukkah events due to take place in Mülheim and the adjoining region have also been cancelled, the head of the local Jewish community confirmed. The German state of North-Rhine Westphalia, where Mülheim is located, has seen an upsurge of antisemitic attacks in the recent years. In the nearby city of Bochum, the Jewish community leaders have urged Jews to stop wearing kippah, the traditional Jewish skullcap that identifies them as Jews, in public. Last month, the local broadcaster Radio Bochum reported that Jews “routinely faced with insults on public streets when they are recognized as Jews.” The broadcaster identified the perpetrators as “Muslim youths.”

    In one of those odd moments in which a politician accidentally speaks the truth, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in 2010 that multiculturalism had failed.  She said that the idea of various cultures living in harmony, "side-by-side" didn't work, that it had "utterly failed."  She's since changed her tune, of course, but she wasn't wrong. Multiculturalism does not, indeed cannot, create a peaceful and happy socio-cultural climate. By its very nature it is about division and disunity, about separating people of various cultures and encouraging them to stay separate from the rest of society.

    Antisemitic demonstrations erupted over the weekend in major European cities, with Muslim groups staging violent and angry protests under the pretext of the US decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. A gang of 20 masked-men fire-bombed a synagogue late Saturday in the Swedish city of Goteborg. The assailants threw several molotov cocktails at the synagogue while a youth event was underway. Jewish children were forced to take shelter in a cellar during the attack, German broadcaster DW News reported.

    While Arab and Muslim leaders were calling for blood on the streets with 'new Intifada' and 'days of rage', and German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other EU leaders were lining up to join the chorus to condemn President Donald Trump for daring to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, leading Indian politicians such as Prime Minister Narendra Modi's nationalist BJP party called the government follow US President's example and move the country's embassy to Jerusalem.

    Two weeks ago, Angela Merkel’s attempt to form a three-way coalition came to an abrupt end after her traditional ally, pro-Business Free Democrats (FDP), unexpectedly walked out of the talks, citing irreconcilable differences over immigration and other key issues. After failing to form the government in the first round, Merkel will hold a second round of talks -- this time with the left-wing Social Democratic Party (SPD).

    Berlin wants to bring back the children of German Islamic State terrorists currently being held under Iraqi detention, German newspapers report. German Foreign Office has asked the Iraqi government to grant exit permits to the children of captive Islamic State members. Many of these children hold "ISIS birth certificates," a German broadcaster reported. So far, Iraqi and Kurdish authorities have not given any assurances to the German negotiators in this regard.

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel's hope of securing a fourth term possibly came to an end last night after the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP) unexpectedly pulled out after four weeks of coalition talks. The collapse of the three-way talks between the Christian Conservatives, the leftist Greens, and the Free Democrats could bring the Merkel era to an abrupt end after 12 years of reign.

    More than a month after the parliamentary election, Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel is struggling to form a coalition government. Merkel's conservative CDU party, which won 33 percent of the vote, will need half of the seats in the German parliament to build a ruling coalition. With her previous coalition partner, the Social Democratic Party (SPD), deciding to sit in the opposition after posting its worst result ever at 20 percent, Merkel is hoping to rope in the libertarian Free Democrats and ecological Green Party to reach the 50 percent mark.

    It’s that time of the year here again in Germany. As winter sets in, the first Christmas decorations have started appearing on the shop fronts. Before you know it, the Christmas markets will be coming up in every town and city across the country. For Merkel's Germany, however, it is also the time of the year when radical Muslim terrorists target the Christmas markets and innocent shoppers.

    It is getting lonely for Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel on the European stage as another EU member country elects an anti-establishment government. Less than a week after the stunning electoral performance by  Austria’s right-wing Freedom Party, the Czech Republic has elected the anti-EU candidate Andrej Babis and his party in yesterday’s general election. Often described by the media as ‘Czech Donald Trump,’ 63-year-old Babis, the country’s second-richest man, won 30 percent of the vote, securing him the Prime-ministership in the next coalition government. Despite an ongoing criminal investigation over his business dealings and the lingering allegations of his collaborating with the Czechoslovak communist-era secret police, many Czech voters preferred voting for Babis than other pro-EU career politicians.

    France's parliament on Wednesday passed a new anti-terrorism law that gives law enforcement sweeping powers to search homes, carry out surveillance, and set up borders checks. The new law replaces the state of national emergency that came into effect after the 2015 Paris attacks, which killed 130 people. The state of emergency was extended six times and due to expire next month. Despite the unprecedented powers given to the police and the security forces, France has been hit by a series of attacks leaving 241 people dead since the imposition of the emergency.

    Just two weeks after the right-wing AfD Party’s surge in the German election, Austria’s Freedom Party (FPÖ) is set to join the country’s next coalition government. The Freedom Party, Europe’s oldest surviving right-wing party, which ran on an anti-Islamization and anti-mass migration platform received 26 percent of the votes, party’s strongest performance in twenty years.
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