News Saturday, MAY 30th, 1998

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Hello and welcome to the programme. I'm AS. First the headlines:

The Christian democrats want a broad coalition after the June parliamentary elections

The Civic democratic alliance, which withdrew from the upcoming elections, calls on its voters to come to the polls

and the German Bundestag has approved an appeal which calls on future EU members to give Germans who were expelled after WWII the right to freedom of movement and settlement.

Those were the main points and now the news in full:

The Christian democrats have rejected one of the few partnerships likely to be capable of forming a majority government, a party official said on Friday. A Christian democratic spokeswoman confirmed media reports that the party had ruled out forming a centre-left coalition with the leading Social democrats and the Pensioners for life securities party. Christian Democrat leader Josef Lux said an alliance with the leftist Pensioners' party, which has surged into third place in recent opinion polls, was not in the cards. Lux said his party wanted a broad coalition including the centre-right Freedom Union and the centre-left Social democrats, if the latter "corrected" some of their policy positions. "We can't imagine the issues of deregulation, pension age or some privatization decisions being brought back to the table. It's unimaginable for us to participate in a government with such proposals," Lux explained.

The Political council of the Civic democratic alliance, ODA, which withdrew from the upcoming parliamentary elections due to its lack of supporters, has called on its voters to come to the polls and back some of the right-wing parties. The alliance will give its recommendation for whom to vote for after a session of its central congress, to be held on June 16. Chairman of the alliance, Daniel Kroupa, told this to the CTK on Friday, adding that his party will call on its supporters not to vote for leftist or extremist parties.

The German Bundestag approved on Friday an appeal from that country's Christian and Social democratic parties which called on future European Union members to give ethnic Germans who had been forced to relocate after WWII the right to free movement and settlement. The Bundestag expressed the hope that after the Czech Republic and Poland enter the EU, it will be easier to address problems that to date, remain unresolved. Christian democratic deputy Erika Steinbach appealed to the Czech Republic and Poland to follow the example set by Hungary and Estonia, and offer German citizens compensation.