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Angela Merkel wins third term

Angela Merkel has won a historic third term as chancellor after her party won Germany's election, but fell short of an absolute majority.

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Germans cast their votes in election

German voters, some dressed in traditional costumes, have been casting their ballots in a election that is widely expected to return the incumbent Angela Merkel to power.

There are some 62 million eligible voters in the country and approval ratings for Merkel have soared over 60 percent in recent years.

The first exit polls are expected around 6pm local time (5PM UK time).

Voters Veronika Stuerzer, Monika Merk, Johann Merk and Michael Merk (L-R) wearing traditional Bavarian costume cast their ballots Credit: REUTERS/Michaela Rehle
Voter Monika Merk, wearing a traditional Bavarian Dirndl, casts her ballot Credit: REUTERS/Michaela Rehle
Corinna Woehrle and Gerlinde Moser (L) wearing traditional Black Forest costumes, fill ballots Credit: REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

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