Future foreign minister Westerwelle refuses to answer English question

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28 Sep, 2009 Updated Mon 28 Sep 2009 17:36 CEST
Future foreign minister Westerwelle refuses to answer English question

Guido Westerwelle, Germany’s newly designated foreign minister, refused to answer a question in English for a BBC reporter during his first press conference after the election, news magazine Der Spiegel reported on Monday.


Westerwelle, who heads the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP), the preferred coalition partner of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU), was asked by the reporter how he would change Germany’s foreign policy. The reporter asked the question in English and said he would prefer an English response.

But Westerwelle apparently balked, and a second attempt by the journalist, this time with the help of a translator, garnered an answer in German.

“We could meet for a fabulous tea outside of a press conference and then speak only English...but this is Germany here,” he said.

Westerwelle has already been criticised for his broken English in the past, the magazine reported.


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