May 13, 2008 / 10:07 AM / 10 years ago

Former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl gets married

BERLIN (Reuters) - Former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl has married his partner Maike Richter, an economist who is nearly 35 years his junior.

<p>Former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl receives a tolerance award from the Berlin Jewish museum in this November 17, 2007 file photo. REUTERS/Miguel Villagran/Pool</p>

Kohl’s office said on Tuesday the two had tied the knot last week at a Heidelberg clinic where Kohl is recuperating from a head injury.

Last month, his office announced that 78-year old Kohl planned to marry Richter, 44, who is on leave from her post in the German Economy Ministry to tend to the former chancellor.

Kohl, a conservative Christian Democrat (CDU), was Germany’s longest-serving post-war leader, in office from 1982 to 1998. He was a driving force behind German reunification in 1990 and European integration.

He underwent knee surgery last year and suffered a bad fall earlier this year, which led him to be hospitalized.

Kohl’s late wife Hannelore, who suffered from a rare illness that made her allergic to light, took her own life in 2001.

Writing by Noah Barkin; Editing by Matthew Jones

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