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Germany coalition talks: Merkel aides see breakthrough

From BBC - January 12, 2018

German politicians have achieved a breakthrough in talks aimed at forming a new coalition government.

A 28-page blueprint for negotiations was agreed between Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) and their former coalition partners, the Social Democrats (SPD).

Politicians stayed up all night thrashing out a deal, with the talks lasting more than 24 hours.

But they managed to reach agreement on key sticking points such as migration.

They plan to limit asylum-seeker arrivals to about 200,000 annually. The blueprint also speaks of capping at 1,000 a month the number of migrants who will be allowed to join their family living in Germany.

The talks also focused on tax changes, German media say. The CDU is pushing to scrap the solidarity tax paid for developing former communist east Germany.

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