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German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier paid tribute to the last Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, who died yesterday, expressing his appreciation for his decisive contribution to German reunification and unity, AFP reported, quoted by BTA.

"By his actions, Gorbachev has shown that he is a great statesman with the courage to open up to democracy, build bridges between East and West, and establish peace in Europe," Steinmeier said in a statement.

"That dream is in ruins now, shattered by Russia's brutal attack on Ukraine," he added.

Mikhail Gorbachev died at a time when democracy failed in Russia, noted German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, France Press reported.

"He died in an era in which not only democracy failed in Russia, but in which Russia and Russian President Vladimir Putin

Vladimir Putin - Russian politician.

Born on October 7, 1952 in Leningrad, now St. Petersburg. Prez dug a new chasm in Europe and waged a terrible war against a neighboring country, Ukraine," Scholz said, calling Gorbachev a courageous reformer.

Former Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel - German politician, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Born on July 17, 1954 in Hamburg.

The family also paid tribute to Gorbachev, describing him as a unique politician of global stature, DPA reported.

"Hopefully the memory of his historic achievement will make it possible to stop Russia's war against Ukraine, especially after these terrible weeks and months," said a statement posted on Merkel's website.

Mikhail Gorbachev died

"Gorbachev wrote world history, he showed how a single statesman can change the world for good," added Merkel.

"Without Gorbachev's courage to reform the USSR, the peaceful revolution in the German Democratic Republic (GDR) would not have been possible either," she added.

"I still remember the fear that I, together with so many people in the GDR, felt in 1989 whether the tanks would come, but then no tanks came, no one fired," Merkel added.

"Mikhail Gorbachev also changed my life in a fundamental way. I will never forget him," added Merkel, AFP reported.

German Foreign Minister Analena Berbock said that at a crucial moment in Germany's history, Gorbachev chose the path of peace and understanding and therefore contributed to the end of the Cold War and the reunification of Germany.

"Germany will be forever grateful to him for that," said the number one diplomat.

Angela Merkel

Vladimir Putin

Frank-Walter Steinmeier

Olaf Scholz