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Germany

Ex-Chancellor Helmut Kohl Remarries

Former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, 78, has married his companion, Maike Richter, 44.

Kohl and Richter

Richter is Kohl's second wife

The wedding took place on Thursday, May 8, in a Heidelberg clinic where Kohl is convalescing after a fall, news agencies reported on Tuesday. Only close family members of the couple attended the ceremony, the reports said.

"We are very happy," a press statement from the former chancellor's office said.

Kohl, a widower, confirmed in April 2005 that he was living with Richter, an economist at the Economics Ministry in Berlin. Their relationship was made public four years after the death of Kohl's wife Hannelore.

Kohl, who was voted out of office in 1998, led Germany to unification in 1990 after delicate negotiations with the Soviet Union and oversaw the dismantling of the communist system in the East with most of the economy being returned to private hands.

The former chancellor underwent surgery in February after the fall at his home in Ludwigshafen, western Germany.

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