Former German leader Schroeder loses privileges over relations with Russia

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s three ruling parties plan to strip former chancellor Gerhard Schroeder of office and staff after he maintained and defended his longstanding ties to Russia despite the war in Ukraine.
Schroeder’s own Social Democratic Party said Wednesday that lawmakers on the House Budget Committee had agreed to tie some of the former German leader’s privileges to actual office, rather than his status as a former chancellor.
They planned to submit a proposal to lawmakers on Thursday.
Schroeder has become increasingly isolated in recent months due to his work for Russian state-controlled energy companies.
The 78-year-old is chairman of the supervisory board of Russian energy company Rosneft and has also been involved in the Nord Stream and Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline projects.
Earlier this year, his office staff resigned and Schroeder faced a fresh wave of outrage from former political allies after the New York Times quoted him as saying the massacre of civilians at Bucha ” must be investigated,” but he did not believe the orders would have come from Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is a longtime friend.

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