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Tuesday, 22 May, 2001, 21:15 GMT 22:15 UK
Schroeder's family secret revealed
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder
Secret is embarrassing, but Mr Schroeder forgives his cousin
By Rob Broomby in Berlin

It has emerged that one of Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's long-lost cousins worked for the former East German secret police, the Stasi.

She is 50 years old and identified simply as Renate G.

The publicity-shy woman was an English translator with the hated secret police.

The chancellor offered his support with a biblical quotation, telling the German newspaper Bild: "He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone."

Fritz Schroeder
Fritz Schroeder: War grave in Romania
It is less than two weeks since Mr Schroeder was reunited with two cousins from the same family but details of the third sister have just emerged.

The original two enjoyed an emotional meeting with the Chancellor in the full glare of publicity on 9 May.

But Renate G met him privately in his official residence in Daarlem and handed over a picture of Mr Schroeder's father, Fritz, whose war grave has just been discovered in Romania.

Renate G is quoted as saying she did not want her past to be a burden on the Chancellor.

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23 Apr 01 | Media reports
Mystery over Schroeder father's grave
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