Berlin, Sep 22 (IANS/EFE) Chancellor Angela Merkel has asked voters to keep her in office for four more years and enable her to ensure Germany remains a “country that is respected in Europe and defends its rights in the world”.
In her last big campaign rally ahead of Sunday’s election, Merkel touted her administration’s successes and pledged her continued commitment to Europe.
She, however, said Germany’s solidarity with its neighbours will always come “with conditions”.
The eurozone debt crisis has not yet been overcome and the region’s countries must continue with the reforms that Germany carried out in its day, she said Saturday.
“Neither Eurobonds nor debt mutualisation,” she told supporters of her Christian Democratic Union party, which is leading voter-preference surveys.
Merkel’s party is looking to secure a big enough margin and thereby avoid having to enter into a grand coalition with the the Social Democratic Party.
Germany, she recalled, was for many years “Europe’s sick patient”, but it made unpopular changes, such as raising the retirement age to 67, that strengthened the country’s finances and paved the way for today’s “collective success”.
The goal is for Europe to follow this path and become a strong continent because “Germany will only do well if Europe is doing well,” said Merkel, who is seeking a third term in office.