Parties agree to move forward to formal coalition negotiations, though efforts could still falter

BERLIN—Angela Merkel made a breakthrough toward forming a government and clinching a fourth term as Germany’s chancellor on Friday after her conservative party and its center-left rivals agreed on the broad lines of a renewed alliance.

After six days of talks covering areas ranging from taxation to immigration, Ms. Merkel’s Christian Democrats and the Social Democrats, or SPD, said they had enough of a basis to begin detailed formal coalition negotiations.

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