European leaders hail Merkel win as 'good result for EU'
PARIS (AFP) - Congratulations poured in from France and Angela Merkel's other European partners on Sunday after the German chancellor clinched her third term in a convincing election victory.
French President Francois Hollande - who has at times been at odds with Ms Merkel over her tough austerity policies for Europe - was the first leader to telephone after poll estimates showed her with a clear win, one of his aides said.
"She was sensitive to that and saw that as a sign of the strength of the French-German relationship and the closeness between the two countries," said the source.
During their phone call, the two leaders "expressed their willingness ... to continue their close cooperation to meet the challenges of the European project", the French presidency said in a statement.