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17. 4. 2016 22:59

Minister Dienstbier represented the Czech Republic at the state funeral of H. D. Genscher

On Sunday the 17th of April 2016, the Minister for Human Rights, Equal Opportunities and Legislation Jiří Dienstbier officially represented the Czech Republic at the state funeral of former Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Germany and its long-standing Vice Chancellor Hans Dietrich Genscher. He died on the 1st of April of this year at the age of 89.

He attended the state funeral, which was held in the conference hall of the former Bundestag in the World Conference Center in Bonn, along with eight hundred representatives from public and political life and not only from the Federal Republic of Germany.

Minister Dienstbier represented the Czech Republic at the state funeral of H. D. Genscher.

In the funeral speeches, the President of Germany Joachim Gauck, Minister of Foreign Affairs between 1992 and 1998 Klaus Kinkel and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the United States between 1989 and 1992 James Baker emphasized the contribution H. D. Genscher made to the peaceful unification of Germany and Europe after the Cold War.

The importance of the Charter of Paris for a New Europe for a peaceful settlement in Europe in the early nineties was repeatedly highlighted. According to the speakers, Genscher’s opposition to the war and his peace efforts resulted from his personal experience of fighting in World War II.

According to Minister Dienstbier, “H.D. Genscher belonged to a generation of statesmen who overcame the division of Europe and tore down walls and barbed wire fences, even symbolically in the minds of Europeans. The Iron Curtain on the Czech-German border being cut down by H. D. Genscher and my father was a symbolic moment of historical change. The experience they shared created a lifelong friendship. It is in our own interest to be constantly reminded of personalities like H. D. Genscher. For me, a permanent reminder will be a piece of barbed wire that my father brought me.”

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