Mercoledì, 17 Ottobre, 2018

Merkel: Kohl Was "right Man at the Right Time"

Parmenio Sano | 17 Giugno, 2017, 04:17

Former German chancellor Helmut Kohl, who has died aged 87, was a "towering figure" who had strength and courage in abundance, Sir John Major has said.

Bild reported in its online edition that Kohl died on Friday morning in his home in Ludwigshafen, in western Germany.

In comments Friday, current German Chancellor Angela Merkel - Kohl's one-time protege and later political adversary - gestured toward these challenges, saying Kohl's memory offers a crucial guide. And about the German situation they said: "if Helmut Kohl doesn't push it through, nobody else will", Kohl said.

— October 1, 1982: Elected chancellor by parliament after the small Free Democratic Party switches its allegiance to the CDU. Kohl oversaw the end of the Cold War and is widely regarded as the mastermind of German reunification.

"Helmut hated war - but he detested totalitarianism even more", former U.S. president George H.W. Bush said in a statement of the former German chancellor. Like so many who bore witness to the unspeakable depravity and hardships of that time, Helmut hated war - but he detested totalitarianism even more.

Former US President George H.W. Bush, who cooperated with Kohl and the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to reunite East and West Germany at the end of the Cold War, also mourned Kohl's death.

"Even though we led a tough election battle in 1998 and differed on many political issues, I have the greatest respect for his historical efforts", Schröder said.


Across German party lines, tributes poured in for the longest-serving German chancellor of the post-war era.

"We are mourning. #RIP #HelmutKohl", said his conservative party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), on Twitter, with a photo of the former leader, who served as chancellor for 16 years.

Once viewed as a provincial bumbler, Mr Kohl combined an understanding of the worries of ordinary Germans with a hunger for power, getting elected four times. Russian president Vladimir Putin said he "admired his wisdom and ability to make far-reaching decisions even in the most hard situations".

"On behalf of the people of Ireland I wish to convey our deepest sympathies to his family and to the people of Germany", said Mr Higgins.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the death of former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl means that Israel has lost one of its "greatest friends".

European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker ordered flags at EU institutions to be flown at half-mast. "My mentor, my friend, the very essence of Europe, he will be greatly, greatly missed".

After retiring from politics, he suffered from health problems, and following a serious fall in 2008, was wheelchair bound. Past year he criticised Dr Merkel's unilateral decision in 2015 to open borders to over one million asylum seekers. Kohl worked with other leaders on the continent to pull together the Treaty on European Union, which helped pave the way for the global organization of today. Helmut Kohl was essentially in charge of two.

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