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German Social Democrats gain ground in poll, Merkel's conservatives weaken

Reuters

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) gained ground in a poll published on Friday as they continued to benefit from their choice of Martin Schulz as candidate for a Sept. 24 federal election, while Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives shed support.

The poll, carried out by Forschungsgruppe Wahlen for broadcaster ZDF, showed the SPD gaining 6 percentage points to reach 30 percent support - its highest level in this legislative period in this particular poll - while Merkel's conservative bloc lost 2 points to 34 percent.

(Reporting by Michelle Martin; Editing by Kim Coghill)