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France's Macron commends Merkel for fighting for European values

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron attend the European Union leaders summit in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron said on Monday he had told Angela Merkel of his friendship and admiration after the German leader said earlier that her fourth term as chancellor would be her last.

“She had to face many challenges, the migrant crisis as well as the financial crisis, she never forgot what values Europe stood for and she led, and is leading, her country, with much courage,” Macron said during a news conference with the Ethiopian prime minister.

Macron added that the context of a rise in far-right parties across Europe during which Merkel’s announcement took place was “not reassuring”.

Reporting by Michel Rose, Writing by Sarah White