German President Steinmeier Thanks and Praises Angela Merkel for her Service
With thanks and praise, Germany’s President Frank-Walter Steinmeier said goodbye to the Merkel government, stating her chancellorship was formative for the image of Germany in the world. Steinmeier also emphasized the challenge posed by the numerous crises in recent years.
President Frank-Walter Steinmeier expressed his respect and gratitude to Chancellor Angela Merkel and her government for their work over the past few years. Now was the end of a “chancellorship that can be counted among the greatest in the history of this republic,” said Steinmeier in Berlin on the occasion of Merkel’s dismissal and the ministers. Above all, the corona pandemic made enormous demands on the government.
Steinmeier had previously requested Merkel and the other members of the grand coalition government to continue their executive offices until a new government has been formed. Their term of office ended with the constitution of the newly elected Bundestag on Tuesday morning.
“To say that the previous legislature was ‘challenging’ doesn’t even come close to the tasks that had to be mastered,” said Steinmeier, especially with a view to the Corona crisis. In this situation, the government had “taken responsibility for our country with all the strength and seriousness that this situation demanded,” stressed the president.
Another challenge was the growing polarization in society, which was accompanied by the “brutalization of language”. In general, democracy requires “a constant balance of interests”. In these times, however, this compensation was particularly difficult.
Steinmeier paid special tribute to Merkel’s services in the 16 years of her reign. Her chancellorship was “formative for our reunited country and the image of our country in the world” and also “formative for a whole generation of young women and men for whom she exemplified a new, very unique form of leadership”.