German Chancellor Angela Merkel suffered another episode of uncontrolled trembling on Thursday, a week after a similar incident sparked questions about her health. It came hours before Merkel was due to board a plane for the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan. The German leader began to tremble as she stood next to President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who was addressing a ceremony to formally appoint a new justice minister. The shaking went on for about two minutes, according to a DPA photographer who was present. Merkel folded her arms in a bid to stop the trembling, which finally subsided after she took a few steps. The chancellor was offered a glass of water, but turned it down. A previous bout of shaking last Tuesday was blamed on dehydration on a hot summer’s day. A German government spokesman said Merkel would not cancel any appointments on Thursday or Friday. “The chancellor is well,” he said. Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert later tweeted she was on the way to Osaka for the G20 summit, and that “numerous bilateral talks with other leaders and government are planned”.
Meanwhile, to head off a repeat of an aircraft failure that forced Merkel to arrive late to the previous G20 summit in Buenos Aires, German media reported that a second A340 is flying to Osaka on standby. The second plane was due for a training flight to Tokyo. Merkel frequently called the European Union’s most influential leader and the most powerful woman in the world, turns 65 next month. She has said she will leave politics at the end of her term, in 2021. There were brief concerns about her health in 2014 when she was taken ill during a television interview. The broadcast was interrupted when she experienced a drop in blood pressure. Seibert explained at the time the leader did not feel well for a moment, then ate and drank something and continued the interview.