People: Schröder before his 80th birthday: Don't regret any decision

Even almost two decades after the end of his political career, former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder (SPD) does not regret any important decisions he made during his active time.

People: Schröder before his 80th birthday: Don't regret any decision

Even almost two decades after the end of his political career, former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder (SPD) does not regret any important decisions he made during his active time. "I can't think of any at the moment, I have to say, none of any importance that I wouldn't meet again," he said in an interview with dpa shortly before his 80th birthday.

However, he added: "I'm happy to apologize for having really offended one or the other in the political debate. But it wasn't that bad." Schröder named the most important decisions of his term in office as the deployment of the Bundeswehr to Afghanistan, his rejection of participation in the Iraq War and the social and economic reforms of Agenda 2010.

Schröder also stands by the fact that shortly after becoming chancellor from 1998 to 2005, he started working as a lobbyist for Russian energy companies. "That's my business, and I've always made sure that what I do professionally - I'm a lawyer and of course also familiar with economic policy - is in accordance with international and German law. And that's the way it is and it will stay that way ."

Friendship with Vladimir Putin

Schröder has been friends with Putin since he became chancellor and still works for the majority Russian companies that run the Nord Stream pipelines through the Baltic Sea. Although he has called the Russian attack on Ukraine a mistake, he still maintains his friendship with Putin. The SPD leadership excluded him because of this, but a party expulsion process against him failed.

Schröder continues to feel at home in his party, which he has been a member of for 61 years. In 1963 he became a member of the SPD "as someone who didn't exactly grow up in brilliant circumstances, but later grew up much more for historical and political reasons," he told the dpa. "I don't want to talk about the end of life now, but as long as they let me, I'll remain a social democrat."

Today he wants his party to return to its anti-war traditions and try to contribute to a peace solution in Ukraine. He hoped that the SPD and Chancellor Olaf Scholz would live up to this responsibility.

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