Former German leader Schroeder appointed director of Gazprom | Your money


BERLIN (AP) — Russia’s state-owned gas company Gazprom said Friday that former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder had been nominated to join its board, a move that comes as the former leader has come under fire for accusing the ‘Ukraine’ during its showdown with Russia.

Schroeder, who led Germany from 1998 to 2005, developed a close relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin when he was chancellor. The 77-year-old already chairs the shareholder committee of Nord Stream AG and leads the board of Nord Stream 2, a new pipeline opposed by the US, Ukraine and some other German allies that has been built to bring Russian gas to Germany under the Baltic Sea but is not yet in operation.

Gazprom has listed Schroeder among 11 candidates for its board of directors, which will be put to the vote at its annual general meeting in St. Petersburg on June 30.

Schroeder’s involvement in the pipeline and unwavering defense of Russia have long drawn mixed criticism in Germany, even in his own center-left Social Democratic Party, which leads Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s new coalition government. Under Scholz, Germany is pushing for diplomatic solutions to the current crisis but has refused to send arms to Ukraine, annoying some allies.

In a podcast last week, Schroeder said he doesn’t think Russian leaders have any interest in military intervention in Ukraine.

“I really hope they finally stop the saber rattles in Ukraine because what I hear there, also in the form of finger pointing at Germany because of the reasonable refusal to send weapons, takes sometimes the cake,” Schroeder said.

On Wednesday, the new chancellor was asked in an interview on ZDF television if he listened to Schroeder’s advice.

“I didn’t ask him for advice and he didn’t give me any either,” Scholz said. Asked about the message sent by the ex-chancellor, he replied: “If I understand the constitutional order of the Federal Republic of Germany correctly, there is only one chancellor. And it’s me.


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