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Germany

US President Obama to visit Berlin in June

US President Barack Obama is to make his first official visit to Berlin next month, although he has been to the German capital before. He made a major foreign policy speech in Berlin during his first election campaign.

Obama is to visit Berlin in June for talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel, a German government spokesman said Friday.

Deputy spokesman Georg Streiter told a regular news briefing that Obama would be in Berlin for two days (June 18-19) after a G8 summit in Northern Ireland.

"President Barack Obama will come to Berlin for an official visit on the invitation of the chancellor," Streiter said. "Details on this working visit will be provided as soon as they are available."

"The chancellor is very much looking forward to this visit and the talks with the president and his delegation which will cover a broad range of bilateral and global issues including the further deepening of the transatlantic relationship," he added.

Talks to create a trans-Atlantic free-trade area between the US and EU are expected to begin within the coming months. If achieved, it would become the world's largest free trade space.

Officials in Berlin had remarked that Obama did not visit the German capital during his first term in office. In 2008 Obama made a major foreign policy speech in Berlin during his first election campaign (pictured above).

jm/rc (dpa, AFP)