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Angela Merkel: A career in pictures

Angela Merkel has announced she is stepping down as German chancellor in 2021, bringing an end to a political career which, by that point, will have spanned more than three decades.

It is a career documented in pictures at every turn: from visiting fishermen during her earliest campaigns, to talks at the White House, and everything in between.

Here, we have collected just a few from the thousands capturing the woman who has been at the helm of Germany for so many years.

A photo taken in 1989 in the northern Polish city of Bachotek shows (from L) now quantum chemistry professor Malgorzata Jeziorska, Joachim Sauer, the husband of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and the German leader during summer school at a university for chemistry students.Image copyright
AFP

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Summer 1989: Mrs Merkel (pictured far right) with Malgorzata Jeziorska and future husband Joachim Sauer at a university summer school for chemistry in Poland

- election campaign, visiting a fisherman's hut in Lobbe on the island of Ruegen, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in November 1990Image copyright
Getty Images

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November 1990: By the next year, she was campaigning in the first German federal election to be held since the country was reunified

Merkel, Angela - Politician, CDU, Germany, Federal Minister for the Environment, Germany - ironing wrapping paper - 1994Image copyright
Getty Images

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January 1994: Mrs Merkel was made minister for the environment in 1994 – which appears to have meant showing off how you recycle wrapping paper

Angela MERKEL , CDU , Minister for the Environment , and Horst SEEHOFER , CSU , Minister for Public Health , during a cabinet meeting in March 1995Image copyright
Getty Images

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March 1995: Mrs Merkel laughs with fellow minister Horst Seehofer, during a cabinet meeting

Angela Merkel sits a covered seat on the beachImage copyright
Getty Images

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March 2000: Mrs Merkel was chosen to lead the centre-right Christian Democrats (CDU) in 2000

Angela Merkel, head of the opposition Christian Democrats, the CDU, speaks at the Lower Saxony Christian Democratic Party's annual general meeting on July 9, 2005 in Emden, GermanyImage copyright
Getty Images

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July 2005: Five years later, she was back on the campaign trail (pictured) – which would lead to her election as Germany’s first female chancellor

Italian Prime minister Romano Prodi, French President Nicolas Sarkozy (hidden), US President George W. Bush, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Russian President Vladimir Putin and British Prime Minister Tony Blair share a laugh as they take position for a family picture with other G8 leaders,Image copyright
AFP

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June 2007: Despite it being the 21st Century, politics is still dominated by men, so Mrs Merkel – here with Italian Prime minister Romano Prodi, French President Nicolas Sarkozy, US President George W Bush, Russian President Vladimir Putin and British Prime Minister Tony Blair – was often the lone female face

German Chancellor Angela Merkel (L) and Peter Mueller, federal prime minister of the Saar region and top candidate of the of the conservative Christian Democratic Union party (CDU) for the upcoming Saarland state election, hold glasses of beer during an election campaign rally in Bosen near Saarbruecken August 15, 2009Image copyright
Reuters

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April 2009: Mrs Merkel became a symbol of fiscal austerity in the years which followed the financial crash

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (L) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel address the press after a meeting at the Federal Chancellery in Berlin, on April 14, 2011.Image copyright
Getty Images

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April 2011: Hillary Clinton, then US Secretary of State, and Mrs Merkel in Berlin

A migrant girl holds a poster of German Chancellor Angela Merkel as migrants walk in Budapest downtown after leaving the transit zone of the main train station, on September 4, 2015Image copyright
AFP

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September 2015: Her decision to open Germany’s borders to refugees in 2015 divided Germany. Pictured: Refugees making their way through Hungary

U.S. President Donald Trump (R) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel (L) participate in a joint news conference at the East Room of the White HouseImage copyright
Getty Images

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April 2018: It also put her on a collision-course with US President Donald Trump

German Chancellor Angela Merkel reacts as she attends a news conference following the Hesse state election in Berlin, Germany, October 29, 2018Image copyright
Reuters

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October 2018: Mrs Merkel tells the world she won’t be standing for re-election

All pictures AFP or Getty Images

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