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Germany's Angela Merkel Says She'll Run For Fourth Term In 2017

German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at a news conference where she announced her plan to run for a fourth term next year. Merkel is the leader of the conservative German Christian Democrats party.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she'll seek another term in the office she's held since 2005, holding a news conference Sunday that ends speculation at a time of intense change in the European Union.

Merkel, 62, made it official in a news conference held by her party, the Christian Democratic Union.

"I told the CDU that I was ready to stand again," she said," according to Deutsche Welle. "This election will be even more difficult than those we have had before as we are facing a strong polarization."

Those words echo what Merkel said this past week, when President Obama paid his final visit both to Germany, the country he visited as a candidate, and to Merkel, the only leader of a major Western power who was in office when Obama was elected.

Merkel and Obama spoke about the need to find unity, and to reach those who've been marginalized by political and economic change.

Merkel said:

"Trying to keep a society together, trying to keep the older and the younger people together; trying to keep those who live in rural areas together with those who live in cities is one of the most important and most noble tasks of politicians these days — trying to see to it that each and every one can find his or her place.

"But those that belong purportedly to certain groups say, 'We are the people, and not the others' — that is something that we cannot allow to happen."

The sentiment exists both in Germany and beyond — and it's up to world leaders to answer the question, she said.

Today, Deutsche Welle quotes the chancellor calling the recent U.S. campaign season "grotesque."

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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