In the wake of two disastrous electoral defeats in regional elections in as many weeks, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has told senior figures in her party, the Christian Democrats (CDU), that she will not seek re-election as party chairwoman in December and won’t seek another term as chancellor when her current mandate ends in 2021.

According to sources with knowledge of the discussions, the party’s poor electoral results in the German state Hesse and rapidly declining national poll numbers...

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