Angela Merkel has stepped down as the leader of the CDU party after 18 years at the helm, although she plans to remain Germany’s chancellor until 2021. Her move comes after the migration crisis left her party languishing in the polls and amid a rising tide of populism in Europe. The Guardian’s Kate Connolly in Berlin takes a look at her legacy. Angela Merkel, 64, has led the centre-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party in Germany for 18 years. Now, as she prepares to make way for her successor as chair of the party, she has repeated her intention to see out her term as chancellor.