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German ex-leader Angela Merkel’s memoirs to be published in November

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Former German chancellor Angela Merkel’s memoirs will be released in late November, nearly three years after the end of her 16-year tenure at the helm of one of Europe’s biggest powers, her publisher said.

The roughly 700-page volume, titled Freiheit (Freedom), will be published on November 26, publisher Kiepenheuer & Witsch announced.

The 69-year-old co-wrote the book with her longtime assistant and adviser Beate Baumann.

Mrs Merkel, a former scientist who grew up in communist East Germany, became Germany’s first female chancellor on November 22 2005.

She steered Germany through a succession of crises including the global financial crisis, Europe’s debt and migration crises and the coronavirus pandemic.

The publisher quoted Mrs Merkel in a statement as saying that “for me, freedom is not stopping learning, not having to stand still but being able to go further, even after leaving politics”.

The company said the book will appear “worldwide in over 30 countries” but did not elaborate.

Mrs Merkel has generally kept a low profile since handing over to current Chancellor Olaf Scholz in December 2021.

She has stayed out of the political fray and away from events of her centre-right party, the Christian Democratic Union.

Mrs Merkel was named The World’s Most Powerful Woman by Forbes magazine for 10 years in a row, and was seen as a powerful defender of liberal values in the West and a role model for girls.

Angela Merkel and Beate Baumann in 2006 (Markus Schreiber/AP)

But her record has faced criticism as well since she stepped down, notably her approach to Ukraine and Russia.

Mrs Merkel has defended her actions, saying months after Russia launched its full-scale invasion that a much-criticised 2015 peace deal for eastern Ukraine bought Kyiv precious time and she will not apologise for her diplomatic efforts.

She has also defended her government’s decisions to buy large quantities of natural gas from Russia, which cut off supplies in 2022.

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