Germany’s SPD to join Merkel coalition govt only if it ‘makes Europe strong’ – Schulz

The leader of German Social Democrats (SPD), Martin Schulz, said on Thursday that his party had found common ground with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives in many areas. However, there were still “big hurdles” to clear before they could agree to join a governing coalition, Schulz added. The two parties enter their final day of exploratory talks on Thursday, more than three months after a national election. According to Schulz, the SPD will only agree to form a coalition if it was sure such a government would strengthen Europe. His party is ready to make suggestions on how to do that during Thursday’s talks, Reuters quoted Schulz as saying.