In the midst of the conflicting situation between NATO and the US, with Russia, regarding a possible invasion of Ukraine and which has the European continent on the edge, a former German chancellor was appointed to the supervisory board of the Russian state-owned gas giant Gazprom, one of the largest energy corporations in the world.
Former social democrat chancellor, 1998/2005, Gerhard Schröder, had already attracted controversy when after leaving office had developed very close ties with Russia and its leader Vladimir Putin.
This time again criticism was abundant. Gerhard Schröder's behavior is damaging Germany, said Christian Social Union lawmaker Stefan Müller. He said all German parties need to discuss cutting the former chancellor off from public funds.
Those who allow themselves to be paid by autocrats do not need money from German taxpayers.
Schröder is scheduled to be admitted to the board when the annual meeting on June 30 in St. Petersburg. The former chancellor already holds several posts related to the Russian energy sector, he is also chairman of the supervisory board of state energy company Rosneft.
His other posts include acting as chairman of the shareholders' committee for Nord Stream AG and president of the board of directors at Nord Stream 2 AG. Both positions involve gas pipelines that connect Russia and Germany and are at the center of an intense debate on the international stage.
Critics of the pipeline, most notably the United States, argue that the pipelines create too much dependence for Europe on Russian gas. They worry that they could be used to pressure European governments to back down should Moscow attempt to invade Ukraine.
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