Bush thanks outgoing Schroeder in phone call

14th October 2005, Comments 0 comments

14 October 2005, WASHINGTON - U.S. President George W. Bush telephoned outgoing German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder Thursday to thank him for his service and to offer his best wishes for the years ahead.

14 October 2005

WASHINGTON - U.S. President George W. Bush telephoned outgoing German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder Thursday to thank him for his service and to offer his best wishes for the years ahead.

"While the two leaders had differences at times on policy, the president said that he enjoyed working with Chancellor Schroeder," White House spokesman Scott McClellan said. "The president expressed his and Mrs. Bush's best wishes to Chancellor and Mrs. (Doris) Schroeder as he prepares to leave office."

Schroeder steadfastly opposed Bush's decision to invade Iraq and helped rally other countries against the U.S. position at the U.N. Security Council.

German opposition to the war brought relations between the two countries to a post-World War II low and Bush refused to speak to Schroeder for months.

Bush was particularly annoyed because Schroeder assured the American president he would not turn the dispute over Iraq into a issue in his 2002 re-election campaign, but then did just that.

Schroeder has continued to criticize the war as he leaves office and has urged his successor to keep German troops out of the country.

Schroeder agreed to step down earlier this week after his SPD party narrowly lost to the conservative CDU in the September 18 elections. Schroeder then led negotiations to hand over power to CDU leader Angela Merkel, who is set to become the first female leader of Germany.

DPA

Subject: German news

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