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Schröder defends Putin: “Interested in ending the war”

Politics Former Chancellor in an interview with “NYT”.

Schröder defends Putin – “Interested in ending the war”

Status: 23: 08 | Reading time: 3 minutes

Gerhard Schroeder, former Chancellor. He is considered a close confidant of Russian President Vladimir Putin

Source: Kay Nietfeld / dpa / archive

In an interview with the New York Times, Gerhard Schröder emphasized that Russian President Vladimir Putin still trusted him. According to Schröder, Putin also wants to end the Ukrainian war, but it’s “not that easy.”

Former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder has again agreed to be a mediator in the war in Ukraine. “I have always represented German interests. I do what I can. At least one party trusts me, “the former SPD leader and current lobbyist for Russian energy companies told the New York Times. A peaceful solution must now be reached as soon as possible. “I think this war was a mistake and I always said it.”

Schröder traveled to Moscow in March to speak with Russian President Vladimir Putin. According to Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), he was not informed of the trip. Schröder, 78, did not comment on the details of the interview with Putin and said so much: “I can tell you that Putin is interested in ending the war. But it’s not that easy. There are a few points that need to be clarified. “

The “New York Times” said he spoke to the former chancellor twice in his hometown of Hanover. This is the first time since the beginning of the Ukrainian war that the former chancellor, who was Putin’s longtime friend, spoke in an interview.

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According to the report, Schröder met with Putin in the Kremlin and sat with him – as did Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron a few weeks ago – at today’s famous six-meter table. In Moscow, he also spoke with Putin’s adviser Vladimir Medinsky and oligarch Roman Abramovich.

But Butr Schröder says of the massacre in the Kiev suburbs: “It must be investigated.”

“You can’t isolate a country like Russia”

According to Schröder, the initiative to travel to Moscow came from the Ukrainian side and was contacted by the Swiss media company Ringier. Ukrainian MP Rustem Umerov informed him about the Ukrainian positions at a meeting in Istanbul before traveling to Moscow. After talking to Putin, there was another meeting with Umerov in the Turkish capital. Then the contact was broken. But he was ready to talk to both sides again, Schröder told the New York Times.

He advocated maintaining relations with Russia despite the offensive war against Ukraine. “You can’t isolate a country like Russia in the long run, either politically or economically,” he said. “German industry needs the raw materials that Russia has. It is not just oil and gas, but also rare earths. And these are raw materials that cannot be easily replaced. “

He does not feel guilty about his close ties with Russia. “I don’t do mea culpa (my mistake) now,” he says. “It is not my thing.”