Exploratory talks between German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU), its Bavarian sister-party, the Christian Social Union (CSU) and the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) have still not ended with an agreement to start formal coalition negotiations.
Party leaders had made progress on some issues, but were still wrangling over taxes, financial policy, immigration and health care more than 18 hours since talks began Thursday morning, according to the DPA news agency.
Several negotiators said talks could last until dawn and did not rule out a decision to adjourn discussions.
Merkel had said Thursday the talks would be “tough,” but that she hoped the parties would conclude the preliminary round by Friday.
Negotiators are set to inform their party executives about progress made during the night on Friday morning.
Merkel said Thursday she hoped the parties would reach an agreement by Friday Media blackout
Thirty-nine negotiators (13 from each party) began exploratory talks on Sunday with the goal of hashing out policy agreements that would allow the parties to start detailed coalition negotiations.
So far, leaders have reportedly agreed to drop Germany’s target of reducing carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2020.
But few details are known about how much progress the parties have made on other issues amid a secretive negotiating atmosphere. \
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