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The Brazilian Government has learned with sorrow of the passing today of former President of the Federal Republic of Germany Walter Scheel.

As member of the Free Democratic Party, Mr Scheel made invaluable contributions to the foundation and consolidation of his country's political system, having served as member of state and federal Parliaments, member of the European Parliament, Minister of Economic Cooperation and Foreign Minister.

In all his public functions, Mr Scheel proved to be a committed supporter of tolerance, democratic freedoms and peace. As Foreign Minister, his support was essential to the success of Chancellor Willy Brandt's "Ostpolitik". As Federal President, from 1974 to 1979, he was actively engaged in the promotion of the European unity.

The Brazilian Government expresses its sympathy to the people and Government of Germany and offers its condolences to the family of the former President.

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