Angela Merkel seen shaking in public for third time in a month

German government insists chancellor is fine

Tom Embury-Dennis
Wednesday 10 July 2019 12:59 BST
Angela Merkel seen shaking as she welcomes Finnish PM

Angela Merkel has been seen shaking in public for the third time in less than a month.

The German chancellor's body shook back and forth visibly as she stood at a military honours ceremony alongside the visiting Finnish prime minister Antti Rinne in Berlin on Wednesday.

It followed similar episodes on 18 June and 27 June. As in both those cases the 64-year-old recovered quickly as she started walking.

Ms Merkel later said at a news conference: "I'm fine. People don't need to worry about me."

The first incident happened on 18 June in hot weather when she met visiting Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Ms Merkel said afterwards that she recovered after drinking three glasses of water.

The temperature was around 18C at the latest event.

She was also seen shaking on 27 June when she met German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier, but her spokesman insisted she was in good health and she later went ahead with her planned trip to Japan for a G20 summit.

A government official told Reuters the latter incident last month was more a psychological issue as she tried desperately to avoid a repeat.

Ms Merkel said as she attended the G20 summit in Japan on 29 June that she understands questions surrounding her health, but insisted: "I'm fine."

Were Ms Merkel to be incapacitated, Mr Steinmeier would appoint a cabinet minister as acting chancellor until parliament elects a new chancellor. This need not be vice-chancellor Olaf Scholz, a member of the Social Democrats, junior partner in Ms Merkel's ruling grand coalition.

A spokesman for the government said Ms Merkel's discussion with Mr Rinne on Wednesday was continuing as planned.

Additional reporting by agencies

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