Ger­many’s Hel­mut Kohl dies at 87

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - WORLD -

HEL­MUT Kohl, the phys­i­cally im­pos­ing Ger­man chan­cel­lor whose re­uni­fi­ca­tion of a na­tion divided by the Cold War put Ger­many at the heart of a united Europe, has died at 87.

Kohl’s Chris­tian Demo­cratic Union party posted on Twit­ter: “We are in sor­row. RIP Hel­mutKohl.”

The for­mer leader died on Fri­day at his home in Lud­wigshafen.

Over his 16 years at the coun­try’s helm from 1982 to 1998 — first for West Ger­many and then for a united Ger­many — Kohl com­bined a dogged pur­suit of Euro­pean unity. Less than a year af­ter the Novem­ber 1989 fall of the Ber­lin Wall, he spear­headed the end of Ger­many’s di­vi­sion into East and West, ush­er­ing in a new era in Euro­pean pol­i­tics.

“Hel­mut Kohl was the most im­por­tant Euro­pean states­man since World War II,” Bill Clin­ton, the for­mer US pres­i­dent, said in 2011. He said Kohl an­swered the big ques­tions of his time “cor­rectly for Ger­many, cor­rectly for Europe, cor­rectly for the US, cor­rectly for the fu­ture of the world”.

Hel­mut Kohl.

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