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Germany: ‘SPD: Merkel mishandles Syrian crisis’

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Angela Merkel’s hesitation over the question of military intervention in Syria has become a campaign issue in the run-up to general elections on September 22.

On September 6, at the G20 in St Petersburg, the Chancellor refused to sign a resolution backed by 10 of her counterparts demanding “a strong international response” to chemical attacks attributed to Bashar al-Assad’s regime. However, she eventually signed the document a day later at the EU foreign ministers’ summit in Vilnius.

With two weeks left to run before the vote, the social democrats have “criticised a diplomatic blunder on the part of the German government,” notes Berliner Zeitung. The SPD alleges that Merkel “hesitated for tactical reasons related to the election campaign” and chides her for “once again choosing a non-aligned position,” as she did in 2011, when Germany abstained in the United Nations Security Council vote on military intervention in Libya.

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