Chancellor Angela Merkel's mother has died at age 90

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Chancellor Angela Merkel's office says the German leader's mother, Herlind Kasner, has died. She was 90.

Merkel's office confirmed the death in a short statement Thursday and asked that the "privacy of the chancellor and her family" be respected.

According to German media reports, Kasner, who lived in the town of Templin, about 75 kilometers (50 miles) north of Berlin, died earlier this month.

Merkel was known to be close to her mother, who was present in parliament when Merkel was sworn in for her fourth term last year. The chancellor, who rarely comments on her private life, has made no public comment on her death.

Kasner was a retired English and Latin teacher in Templin, where Merkel's father, who died in 2011, was a protestant minister.