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US cables call Merkel the `Teflon` chancellor

Last Updated: Thursday, December 9, 2010 - 11:57

Berlin: German leader Angela Merkel has
brushed off reports in secret US diplomatic cables that
describe her as the "Teflon" chancellor as mere party chatter.

Most of what is said about Germany in the leaked US
Embassy cables released by the WikiLeaks website "is part of
every better party and therefore we weren`t all that excited,"
Merkel told journalists.

The cables also describe her as risk-averse and seldom
creative, and yesterday`s statement was Merkel`s first
reaction since the documents were made public last week.

In them, US diplomats describe her as "Teflon" chancellor
in an apparent reference to her ability to stay above the
political fray something that German commentators noted for

The content of some of the cables, however, appeared to
have forced the sacking of the chief of staff of German
foreign minister, Guido Westerwelle.

A spokesman for Westerwelle`s Free Democrats party said
Helmut Metzner`s contract was terminated yesterday, days after
it was disclosed he informed the US Ambassador Philip Murphy
about the content of the party`s coalition negotiations with
Merkel`s conservative party following the 2009 elections.

Murphy described the 41-year-old Metzner a "young
up-and-coming" FDP member in one of his cables.

German officials have repeatedly stressed that the leaked
documents which described Merkel, Westerwelle and others in
sometimes unflattering terms won`t damage the good working
relationship with the US on the long run, and Murphy was seen
as walking into the chancellery today alongside Merkel`s chief
of staff Ronald Pofalla.


First Published: Thursday, December 9, 2010 - 11:57
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