BERLIN – France’s new President Francois Hollande has arrived in Berlin for a keenly anticipated first meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
His arrival was delayed by one hour after the presidential plane suffered an inflight lightning strike and had to return to Paris to be swapped for another.
Hollande is being received by Merkel with an honour guard after which they will hold talks that are expected to be dominated by Europe’s debt crisis.
The two leaders are scheduled to hold a joint news conference following the meeting and then have dinner together.
The French president’s first foreign trip since taking office earlier Tuesday continues a tradition for leaders of both countries to visit each other shortly after inauguration.
He flies back to Paris late Tuesday.