Angela Merkel, born July 17, 1954, has been the chancellor of Germany since 2005 and leader of the Christian Democrat party, CDU, since 2000.
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EU leaders have voiced wariness that Russia is seeking to weaken the bloc, according to EU President Donald Tusk. However, an EU plan to threaten Russia with sanctions for its part in attacks on Aleppo was put on hold.
Leaders from Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France are meeting in Berlin for talks on reviving the stalled peace process in eastern Ukraine. The leaders are also expected to address Russia's role in the Syria conflict.