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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 October 2005, 05:57 GMT 06:57 UK
'No cabinet role' for Schroeder
By Ray Furlong
BBC News, Berlin

Mr Schroeder's future is as yet unclear
German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder has indicated he will play no role in the new coalition government.

Mr Schroeder's remarks were his first public reaction to the news on Monday that Christian Democrat leader Angela Merkel will lead the new government.

Several members of Mr Schroeder's Social Democratic Party had called on him to serve in the new cabinet.

Mr Schroeder has however confirmed that he will help in the negotiations on forming the new governing coalition.

There has been lively speculation about Mr Schroeder's future. Many Social Democrats wanted him to serve as foreign minister and vice-chancellor, but he now appears to have ruled that out.

It remains unclear what Mr Schroeder will do.

Russian media have reported he may work as an adviser for Gazprom, the state-owned energy giant.

Social Democrat officials have, however, dismissed the idea.

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