Sir Keir Starmer discusses Brexit and Ukraine with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz

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Sir Keir Starmer discussed Brexit and Ukraine when he met German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Wire)
Sir Keir Starmer discussed Brexit and Ukraine when he met German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Wire)

Sir Keir Starmer has discussed Brexit and Ukraine with the Chancellor of Germany.

The Labour leader met Olaf Scholz for private talks at the headquarters of his left-wing Social Democrat Party (SPD) in Berlin on Friday.

The meeting was said by Labour to have been about building relationships with Germany after Brexit and Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

The party also said Sir Keir wanted to talk about Labour’s hopes of winning the next general election, plans for Britain and Germany to work more closely together economically, and taking advantage of a move towards environmental sustainability.

The meeting came ahead of an expected confidence vote in the House of Commons on Monday which could see a general election triggered.

Speaking afterwards, Sir Keir said his talks with the Chancellor demonstrated a “contrast” between his party and the Conservatives.

He said: “We don’t fear any of the candidates because the change that the United Kingdom needs is not a change at the top of the Conservative Party.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer had talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at SPD headquarters in Berlin (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Wire)
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer had talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at SPD headquarters in Berlin (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Wire)

“We’ve already had 12 years of failure from the Conservative Party. The change we need, the fresh start we need for Britain is a change of Government and therefore I don’t fear any of these leaders.

“And the contrast between them squabbling like cats in a bag, making ludicrous spending commitments, and the Labour Party – united, ready for election, me here speaking to Chancellor Scholtz about how we develop relations between our parties, how we grow our economies, big issues such as Ukraine – the contrast between the two parties has never been starker than it is now.”

Ahead of their meeting, the two men posed for photos inside the SPD headquarters in front of a statue of Willy Brandt, a Nobel Peace Prize winner who served as Chancellor between 1969 and 1974 and leader of the SPD from 1964 to 1987.

Sir Keir Starmer and Chancellor Olaf Scholz discussed Brexit and Ukraine during their meeting in Berlin (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Wire)
Sir Keir Starmer and Chancellor Olaf Scholz discussed Brexit and Ukraine during their meeting in Berlin (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Wire)

The meeting came after Sir Keir visited the Berlin Wall on Friday morning, where he viewed some of the famous artwork.

On Thursday, the first day of his two-day trip to the German capital, the Labour leader met Wolfgang Schmidt, Germany’s federal minister for special affairs, head of the chancellery and commissioner for the Federal Intelligence Service.

Sir Keir is being accompanied on the visit by shadow foreign secretary David Lammy.

The pair also visited the Memorial To The Murdered Jews Of Europe, where they took a guided tour around the Holocaust memorial before posing for photos with students in front of the Brandenburg Gate.

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