State minister helps expats mark German Day of Unity

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German State Minister Cornelia Pieper and Berlin Opera ballet company helped German expats celebrate the country’s Day of Unity at a grand event in Bangkok.

Held two days before the Oct. 3 holiday to accommodate both politicians and dancers, the event commemorates the anniversary of German reunification in 1990 and the anniversary for the re-founding of the five states Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringen.

(From right) Ambassador Rolf Schulze, Petronella Schulze, Dr. Ingo Winkelmann, Ursula Allroggen, Military Attaché Ansgar Siebrecht and his wife Nicole wait to welcome the guests. (From right) Ambassador Rolf Schulze, Petronella Schulze, Dr. Ingo Winkelmann, Ursula Allroggen, Military Attaché Ansgar Siebrecht and his wife Nicole wait to welcome the guests.

Ambassador Rolf Schulze and his wife Petronella welcomed the 800 guests to the Siam Kempinksi Hotel, which played host to the Ballet of the State Opera of Berlin.

“I am happy to say that 2012 – the year we celebrate 150 years of diplomatic relations between Thailand and Germany – has been an excellent year for Thai-German relations,” Schulze said. “Thailand has emerged strong from the flood catastrophe which rocked us one year ago. Bilateral trade between Thailand and Germany is at a new high. We have had a steady and unprecedented exchange of high-level visitors in both directions. Cooperation in science, education and culture has become broader and deeper.”

The German ambassador Rolf Schulze with his wife Petronella (both far right), State Minister Cornelia Pieper (4th from right), and Karl Heinz Heckhausen, the president of the German-Thai Chamber of Commerce (far left) with important politicians of Thailand.  The German ambassador Rolf Schulze with his wife Petronella (both far right), State Minister Cornelia Pieper (4th from right), and Karl Heinz Heckhausen, the president of the German-Thai Chamber of Commerce (far left) with important politicians of Thailand.

Pieper agreed that the many high-level political visits demonstrated growing strength of relations between the two countries. Among the visitors this year were Thailand’s prime minister and foreign minister, while Germany’s vice chancellor, foreign minister and economy minister arrived in Bangkok.

After the speeches, the ambassador made toasts to HM the King and German President Joachim Gauck. Famed guitarist Hucky Eichelmann played the anthems of both countries.

State Minister Cornelia Pieper and ambassador Rolf Schulze listen to Hucky Eichelmann playing the anthems. State Minister Cornelia Pieper and ambassador Rolf Schulze listen to Hucky Eichelmann playing the anthems.