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Memoirs of former German leader Angela Merkel, titled ‘Freedom,’ will be published in November

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BERLIN (AP) — The memoirs of former German Chancellor Angela Merkel will be released in November, nearly three years after her 16-year tenure leading one of Europe’s biggest powers ended.

The roughly 700-page volume, titled “Freiheit” (“Freedom”), will be published on Nov. 26, publisher Kiepenheuer & Witsch announced Monday. Merkel co-wrote the book with her longtime assistant and adviser, Beate Baumann.

Merkel, a former scientist who grew up in communist East Germany, became Germany’s first female chancellor on Nov. 22, 2005. The 69-year-old 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 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 didn’t elaborate.

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 center-right party, the Christian Democratic Union.

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.

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

Merkel has defended her actions, saying months after Russia launched its full-scale invasion that a much-criticized 2015 peace deal for eastern Ukraine bought Kyiv precious time and she won’t apologize for her diplomatic efforts. She also has defended her government’s decisions to buy large quantities of natural gas from Russia, which cut off supplies in 2022.

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