For weeks it was unclear whether former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, who was also controversial within his own party, would be honored for 60 years of SPD membership. Now there is a date for it.
The SPD district of Hanover will honor former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder on October 27th for 60 years of party membership. The managing director of the SPD district, Christoph Matterne, confirmed a corresponding report from the magazine “Stern”.
Accordingly, Schröder should receive a certificate and a pin at a non-public event. The signatures of the party chairmen, Saskia Esken and Lars Klingbeil, are also included on the documents. Esken had suggested that Schröder resign from the party months ago because of his proximity to Russia.
Whether Schröder will be honored for his party anniversary is controversial within the SPD. His local Hanover Oststadt-Zoo association considered foregoing the honor. Hanover’s former mayor Herbert Schmalstieg then offered to accept the honor.
Honor coordinated with Schröder
According to “Stern”, the appointment was now agreed with Schröder in a personal conversation. In addition to Schmalstieg’s laudatory speech, Bundestag member Matthias Miersch, chairman of the SPD district of Hanover, will give a welcoming speech. Around 50 guests, including friends of Schröder and members of his cabinet, would be invited.
The SPD district explained that honoring long-term membership is an elementary part of the rights and obligations that arise from party membership. As a rule, the honor is carried out by the local association. It was decided in consultation with the local SPD association that the district would now take over.
Schröder is considered a close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin and was active for Russian energy companies for years. Schröder has also been criticized within his own party, especially since the beginning of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. However, Schröder is allowed to remain in the SPD. Applications to appeal against a corresponding decision were ultimately rejected as inadmissible by the SPD Federal Arbitration Commission in mid-May.
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