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German economy minister blasts Merkel on EU-US trade treaty

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and German Vice Chancellor, Economy and Energy Minister Sigmar Gabriel gives a news conference following the weekly cabinet meeting on May 25, 2016 in Meseberg near Gransee, northeastern GermanyGermany’s economy minister lashed out at Chancellor Angela Merkel for her “wrong” stance on a huge EU-US free trade pact in an interview to be published Monday, signalling a deepening rift within the government over the controversial accord. Sigmar Gabriel, also the vice chancellor, told the RND group of regional papers that his Social Democratic Party “doesn’t wish to be part of a bad deal”, as he warned against a hastily negotiated agreement on the so-called Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). Washington and Brussels want the TTIP completed this year before Obama leaves office, but it has faced mounting opposition on both sides of the Atlantic.

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