Thursday 21 September 2017

Germany elects new president

Frank-Walter Steinmeier was elected German president (AP)
Frank-Walter Steinmeier was elected German president (AP)

Germany has elected Frank-Walter Steinmeier to become the country's new president.

Mr Steinmeier, Germany's former foreign minister, was elected by a parliamentary assembly in Berlin with 931 of the 1,260 votes.

The special election assembly was made up of the 630 lawmakers in parliament's lower house and an equal number of representatives from Germany's 16 states.

The German president has little executive power but is considered an important moral authority.

Mr Steinmeier, a Social Democrat, had the support of Chancellor Angela Merkel's "grand coalition" of centre-right and centre-left parties.

The presidential vote was one of the last moments of coalition unity ahead of a parliamentary election in September in which Mrs Merkel is seeking a fourth term. Both sides hope to end the "grand coalition."

AP

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