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Germany needs to prepare for ‘extraordinary act of solidarity’ with EU countries – Merkel

The coronavirus pandemic means Germany needs to be ready for “an extraordinary act of solidarity” with other EU states, Chancellor Angela Merkel has said. Her statement comes as Berlin prepares to take on the rotating EU presidency from July 1.

In an interview with six European newspapers, Merkel called the pandemic a “challenge of unprecedented dimensions” and urged EU members to maintain their internal markets “and to present a united front in the world.”

Commenting on US President Donald Trump’s plans to withdraw troops from Germany, she said: “In Germany, we know that we need to spend more on defense, and we have achieved significant increases in this respect in recent years.”

“American troops in Germany serve both the protection of Germany and the European part of NATO and the interests of the United States,” the chancellor added.

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