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»Rubbish, full rubbish!«: Christian Schmidt with outburst of anger at press conference


At a press conference, Christian Schmidt was enraged by a question – the answer from the UN representative for Bosnia was extremely undiplomatic. Sharp criticism comes from the SPD.

Enlarge image

Christian Schmidt at a press conference in Sarajevo on July 27

Photo: IMAGO/Armin Durgut/PIXSELL / IMAGO/Pixsell

Christian Schmidt was once Federal Minister of Agriculture - since May 2021 he has had a different post: As "High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina", the CSU politician is to monitor the implementation of the peace treaty in the former civil war country.

A top diplomatic office that requires a lot of patience in the Western Balkan country, which is marked by ethnic tensions.

Patience that Schmidt has now apparently lost.

At a press conference in the town of Goražde in eastern Bosnia-Herzegovina, he was anything but diplomatic.

Schmidt yelled at a journalist.

No sooner had he asked his question than Schmidt exclaimed: "Rubbish, full rubbish!"

It was about controversial changes to the electoral law that Schmidt would like to make – he has the authority to do so by virtue of his office.

»It damages the reputation and effectiveness of the office«

The CSU politician's outburst has met with harsh criticism from Germany's largest governing party.

“The High Representative's reaction is totally inappropriate.

It damages the reputation and the effectiveness of the office," says Adis Ahmetovic, SPD member of the Bundestag and rapporteur for his parliamentary group for the Western Balkans, the SPIEGEL.

»In the currently challenging times, when Russian influence and thus attempts at destabilization are also increasing in the Western Balkans, we need a strong office of the High Representative.«

The video of the performance makes it clear how much Schmidt got angry.

In English he said he was in a city where people had lost their lives.

You are not there just to play political games.

The politicians in this country would do this, and he was - loosely translated - fed up with it.

The journalists may ask their questions - "but please accept my decision".

Then Schmidt made it clear with a gesture that it was "up to here" for him to be exposed to attacks that were absolutely wrong.

The content of the question was why the reform only favored the ethnic minority of Croats, but not the Jews or Sinti and Roma.

A planned increase in the percentage hurdle for entry into the Bosnian-Herzegovinian parliament is controversial – presidential and parliamentary elections are to take place in Bosnia-Herzegovina on October 2nd.

The post of High Representative was created to oversee the implementation of the civilian aspects of the Dayton Peace Agreement.

It ended the war in the country in 1995.

The High Representative can intervene in politics, make and repeal laws, and remove politicians from office.

The federal government was recently trying to strengthen Schmidt and his local office.

This is one of the reasons why she sent the first of around 25 German soldiers to take part in the EU operation Eufor Althea this week.

Between 1992 and 1995, the bloodshed fomented by what was then Serbia cost almost 100,000 lives and drove more than two million people to flee.


Source: spiegel

All news articles on 2022-08-18

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