Angela Merkel congratulated by world premiers
22 November 2005, PARIS/JOHANNESBURG/VIENNA - French President Jacques Chirac on Tuesday conveyed his congratulations to newly elected German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and called for their two countries to give Europe "a new impetus".
22 November 2005
PARIS/JOHANNESBURG/VIENNA - French President Jacques Chirac on Tuesday conveyed his congratulations to newly elected German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and called for their two countries to give Europe "a new impetus".
In a personal message to Merkel, made public by Chirac's press office, the French president sent the first woman chancellor in German history his "most sincere and warmest congratulations".
"Our two countries should work together to give a new impetus to the European Union and pursue our joint efforts to make the world safer and more just," Chirac wrote.
He went on to compare Merkel's commitment to Europe and French-German relations with that of Germany's first post-war chancellor, Konrad Adenauer.
Chirac went on to describe bilateral relations as "exemplary" and "a major contribution to European integration, at the service of a Europe (that is) politic and social, competitive and united".
In her first official trip abroad as chancellor, Merkel will travel to Paris on Wednesday.
South Africa President Thabo Mbeki also congratulated Merkel, saying her appointment as the first women to hold this position was a positive example for the world.
"Your inauguration to the Chancellery is a watershed moment for the German population in general and women in particular, and it communicates the unequivocal progressive message of Germany's willingness to lead and set a clear positive example for the global community to emulate, especially on issues of gender and women's rights," Mbeki said in a statement.
Mbeki, who was in Abidjan in the Ivory Coast on Tuesday, also affirmed the "cordial" relations between South Africa and Germany and said his government looked forward to further strengthening bilateral ties with Germany under Merkel.
Earlier Austria's Federal Chancellor Wolfgang Schuessel said the election of Angela Merkel as German Chancellor was "a special moment".
For the first time a woman was in office, and also someone who came from the east of the country, and for whom freedom had not always been a matter of course, he said after the regular weekly cabinet session.
Schuessel, of the conservative People's Party, said the incoming "grand coalition" - of Merkel's Christian Democratic Union/ Christian Social Union with the Social Democrats - would be an opportunity for new momentum in German politics and economics.
In his view, said Schuessel, seven years of the "red-green" coalition of SPD and Greens in Germany had left "deep scars". At the beginning of the new government's term of office, "painful" rationalization measures would be necessary.
He said he was convinced of positive cooperation between Austria and Germany in the future, and pointed out there had been close contacts between new Chancellor Merkel and Austria for a long time already.
Copyright DPA with Expatica
Subject: German news