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BERLIN, GERMANY (OCTOBER 31, 2018) (REUTERS) GERMAN CONSERVATIVE FRIEDRICH MERZ, POSSIBLE SUCCESSOR OF ANGELA MERKEL AS LEADER OF THE CHRISTIAN DEMOCRATIC UNION (CDU), ENTERING NEWS CONFERENCE AND SITTING DOWN CLOSE UP OF MERZ MERZ POSING FOR MEDIA CAMERAMEN WALKING PAST MERZ PHOTOGRAPHERS (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN CONSERVATIVE, FRIEDRICH MERZ, SAYING: "Before you is a really convinced European and a convinced Transatlanticist. I stand for a Germany that is open to the world, whose roots are based on its Christian ethics and the European enlightenment and whose most important allies are the democracies of the Western world. Yes, I do use this expression, again and gladly, the democracies of the Western world." PHOTOGRAPHERS (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN CONSERVATIVE, FRIEDRICH MERZ, SAYING: "The CDU needs awakening and change, the CDU needs a forward-oriented political discussion, and that means, as I understand it, to be clear about its core values. We have to make clear that this party is a big people's party in the centre and that it will stay that way." MERZ AT NEWS CONFERENCE JOURNALIST WRITING (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN CONSERVATIVE, FRIEDRICH MERZ, SAYING: "Angela Merkel deserves, from my point of view, great respect and acknowledgement for her work over 18 years as leader of the party. It comes as no surprise that I haven't agreed with all the decisions made but anyway she deserves respect and acknowledgement. Last weekend, she took a very hard - but I think also necessary - decision in order to push this renovation herself by not running again as leader at the party congress in December. That leaves the way for a different and personal renewal of our party wide open." JOURNALISTS CLOSE UP OF HAND WRITING (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN CONSERVATIVE, FRIEDRICH MERZ, SAYING: "Migration, globalisation, climate change and digitalisation. These are, as I see it, the biggest challenges of our time. That is why I want to push for these issues in the renewal of our party and to lead it with a calm hand." JOURNALISTS (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN CONSERVATIVE, FRIEDRICH MERZ, SAYING: "We have to talk about the future of the European Union, and I know the biggest challenge in that regard is to hold the euro zone together. That is the biggest challenge for the coming years and I have an opinion on that matter.” NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS MEDIA REFLECTED IN MIRROR VARIOUS OF MERZ LEAVING NEWS CONFERENCE
Dateline: 2018

I'm A Convinced European, Possible Merkel Successor Says

Item ID: 110575697

By: Reuters

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