Europe

Merkel appeals court order to reveal chats with journalists

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, shakes hands with the Prime Minister of Iraq Haider al-Abadi for the media ahead of bilateral talks during the Munich Security Conference in Munich, Germany, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017. The annual weekend gathering is known for providing an open and informal platform to meet in close quarters. (Christof Stache/Pool via AP)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, shakes hands with the Prime Minister of Iraq Haider al-Abadi for the media ahead of bilateral talks during the Munich Security Conference in Munich, Germany, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017. The annual weekend gathering is known for providing an open and informal platform to meet in close quarters. (Christof Stache/Pool via AP)  (The Associated Press)

The German government is appealing a court order requiring it to provide information about any background briefings that Chancellor Angela Merkel has with journalists.

A Berlin court ruled in favor of a newspaper reporter who had demanded details about the time, place, participants and topics of Merkel's off-the-record chats, though not the precise contents.

The German weekly Der Spiegel first reported the ruling over the weekend.

Merkel's spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said Monday the government has "a very clear legal stance which it will present during the further course of the case."

The head of Germany's journalists association DJV criticized the court's decision. Frank Ueberall said the wording of the ruling could result in all conversations between journalists and officials being publicized.