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Merkel cautious on US vote comment, says she values science

November 2, 2020 GMT
German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) gives a press conference to capital city journalists at the Federal Press Conference in Berlin, Monday, Nov.2, 2020. The Chancellor will inform media representatives about the results of the corona cabinet on corona measures and the current situation of the infection incidence. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) gives a press conference to capital city journalists at the Federal Press Conference in Berlin, Monday, Nov.2, 2020. The Chancellor will inform media representatives about the results of the corona cabinet on corona measures and the current situation of the infection incidence. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)

BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel declined Monday to comment directly on the U.S. election, but said that she values the advice of scientists — hours after President Donald Trump took another shot at the top U.S. infectious disease expert.

Trump responded to supporters’ chants to “fire Fauci” during a rally in Florida early Monday by saying: “Don’t tell anybody but let me wait until a little bit after the election.”

Dr. Anthony Fauci, a leading member of the White House coronavirus task force, has clashed with Trump over his administration’s handling of the pandemic, which has so far killed more than 231,000 people in the United States.

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Asked about her views on whether the leader of Germany’s close ally should heed the word of scientists, Merkel made clear she wouldn’t comment on the vote.

“I certainly won’t do that one day before the election in the United States,” she said.

But she added that “you know that simply because of my education as a physicist I naturally attribute great weight to scientific advice, and make use of it myself.”