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Talk about highway speed limit divides Germans

FILE - In this May 15, 2013 photo a traffic sign indicating a speed limit of 120 km/h (75 mph) is pictured at the highway A59 close to Troisdorf, Germany. (Oliver Berg/dpa via AP, file)

BERLIN (AP) — A leaked proposal to impose universal speed limits on the Autobahn is causing outrage among car-loving Germans.

The country’s transport minister, Andreas Scheuer, has said the idea “goes against all common sense.” But prominent Green Party lawmaker Cem Ozdemir defended the proposal Tuesday, calling it an “act of reason.”

Germany is one of the few countries in the world that doesn’t impose speed limits on its beloved Autobahn highways.

The idea — still very much just a notion — would limit speeds on the country’s highways to 130 kph (80 mph). Proponents say this would reduce air pollution, help fight climate change and reduce the number of car accidents.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman, Steffen Seibert sought to smooth the waves created by the leaked report, saying Monday that a government-appointed committee examining various proposal isn’t finished yet.

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