European Parliament formally elects Ursula von der Leyen as head of European Commission

The European Parliament voted to confirm Ursula von der Leyen as the president of the European Commission. The former German defence minister will be head of the Commission for the next five years.

A member of the centre-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU), she is the first woman to hold the office of President of the European Commission.

She is the only minister to have served continuously in Angela Merkel's cabinet since she took office, and has previously been regarded as a leading contender to succeed Merkel as Chancellor and as the favourite to become Secretary-General of NATO.

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