Merkel Plans to Resign as CDU Party Leader, but Will Remain German Chancellor

BERLIN- German Chancellor Angela Merkel is ready to leave the post of the leader of the Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU) and will not take part in the election of the CDU leader, but she plans to preserve the position of German Chancellor, the news agency DPA reported on Monday.

Merkel declared her decision at a CDU board session in light of the loss of votes by the party at a regional election in the German state of Hesse. The convocation of the Christian democrats that will re-elect the party leadership will be held in early December, according to the Agency.

Merkel repeatedly stated that the position of the government head is closely connected with the post of the party leader to her. She earlier stated that she plans to work the whole four-year term and plans to run for the CDU chairmanship in December.

EU May Make Joint Decision to Halt Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia: Merkel

German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated that the European Union might make a collective decision to halt all arms sales to Saudi Arabia over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Merkel was speaking during a quartet summit held on Saturday between Presidents of Russia, France, Germany, and Turkey in Istanbul, during which the four leaders discussed issues relating to peaceful settlement in Syria as well as the case of murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

She agreed with her French counterpart Emmanuel Macron that the decision should be made after more is known about those responsible for his death.

Putin: Fate of Syria Must be Ultimately Decided by the Syrians

ISTANBUL- Setting up the committee to discuss the Syrian constitution is a priority, but eliminating the remaining radical elements [terrorists] in the country remains an important objective, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin said at the Istanbul summit, according to RT.

“While the degree of violence in Syria has been greatly reduced, elimination of all the radical elements is still an important task,” President Vladimir Putin said, speaking after the four-way Syria summit with leaders of Turkey, France and Germany. “We cannot allow the battle-hardened bandits to carry on with their illicit activities, to create “sleeper cells” in our countries, recruit supporters and spread extremist ideology and terror.”

Iran Says Will Never Change Regional Policies under any US President

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi has reaffirmed the country's "logical and quite transparent" policies, saying the Islamic Republic would never change its approaches to regional developments under any administration in the United States.

Qassemi made the remark in an interview with ISNA published on Friday in response to "incorrect and unfounded" claims made by US President Donald Trump against Iran in an interview on Tuesday with four members of The Wall Street Journal’s White House team in the Oval Office.

Quartet Summit to Focus on Settlement of Crisis in Syria, Says Peskov

Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov reaffirmed the necessity of continuing to exert efforts for a political settlement to the crisis in Syria.

Russian Sputnik News Agency quoted Peskov as telling journalists that the states participating in the quartet summit to be held Saturday in Istanbul are Russia, Germany, France and Turkey, clarifying that they are fully in agreement that the goal of the summit is finding a political settlement to the crisis in Syria yet, they differ on the viewpoints with regards to the suitable techniques and tactics for achieving that, considering that there is no contradiction in the common goal yet in the approach.

Nebenzya Warns Western States against Attempting to Escalate Crisis in Syria

NEW YORK– Russia’s Permanent Representative at the UN Vasily Nebenzya warned Western states against attempting to escalate the crisis in Syria to achieve suspicious personal gains, according to SANA.

During a Security Council session on the situation in the Middle East, Nebenzya said that it’s impossible to impose the constitutional committees with conditions that contradict the Syrians’ will, and that there are no basis to set arbitrary dates for forming this committee.

Sanders Calls Saudi-Led War on Yemen ‘Moral Disaster’ for Washington

US Senator Bernie Sanders has called the Saudi-led brutal war on the impoverished Yemen a moral disaster for Washington, saying the military aggression has undermined counter-terrorism operations against violent extremists such as the al-Qaeda and the Daesh Takfiri terrorist groups in Yemen.

In an article in The New York Times on Wednesday, the 77-year-old Vermont independent also said the White House must urgently redefine its relationship with Riyadh, considering the brutal murder and likely assassination of Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi in the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul and the Saudi war on Yemen, Press TV reported.

Putin, Trump May Discuss Drone Attacks on Russian Air Base in Syria — Kremlin

MOSCOW-  Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov has described as "very alarming" the evidence the drones that attacked Russia’s Aerospace Force in Syria last January were operated from a US plane. Peskov did not rule out that Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump might discuss this issue, according to Itar Tass.

"This evidence is very alarming. It goes without saying nobody should have any doubts that our military specialists will carry out proper analysis and make the required conclusions," Peskov told the media.