Merkel news conference with Dutch PM canceled after German coalition talks fail

Chancellor Angela Merkel has canceled a news conference with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte that had been planned for Monday, after German coalition talks failed overnight, Reuters said. The meeting between the two leaders was also postponed, RIA Novosti reported, citing the German government. The Netherlands’ new foreign minister, Halbe Zijlstra, said on Monday that the collapse of Merkel’s talks to form a three-way coalition government was “bad news for Europe.” Some in Germany held out the prospect of a possible new election, but Zijlstra said that was a bad idea, adding that the Dutch government took seven months to form.