World

Merkel says 'very well' despite third shaking spell

11 July 2019 - 51   - 0

German Chancellor Angela Merkel insisted she was "very well", despite suffering her third trembling spell in less than a month on Wednesday that has focused attention on her health.

Merkel began shaking involuntarily as national anthems were being played at the reception of Finnish Prime Minister Antti Rinne.

But she attended a press conference as planned just around an hour later, telling journalists that her health was no cause for concern.

"I feel very well, there is no need to worry," she said, adding that she was simply still in a phase of "processing" a previous shaking spell, but that "there has been progress".

"I will have to live with it for a while," added Merkel, who turns 65 next week.

"Just like how it has come, one day it will go away too," she said.

A source close to the government had said the cause of the repeat shaking was now psychological, with memories of the first incident provoking renewed trembling at events with similar settings.

- Episodes played down 

The shaking on Wednesday was visible although less severe than during the first episode in June.

On that occasion she appeared unsteady and shook as she stood in the midday sun next to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, whom she was welcoming with military honours.

That first bout of shaking was blamed on dehydration. But a second episode struck a week later at the end of June, just hours before she was due to board a plane for a G20 summit in Japan.

Officials had sought to play down fears over her health then, saying that she was fine and that she would not be cancelling any planned engagements.

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