In the lower house of the Bundestag, German Foreign Minister and Vice-Chancellor Frank-Walter Steinmeier today called for the United States to remove its nuclear arsenal from German soil.
“If we wish Europe to be made into a nuclear-free zone, that would also apply to the nuclear weapons still left in Germany,” Steinmeier insists. The United States has kept a small nuclear arsenal in Germany since the Cold War, though the nation has no nuclear arsenal of its own and has declined an offer to share control over the French arsenal.
Steinmeier, a member of the Sozialdemokratische Partei (SPD) is a leading candidate to unseat Chancellor Angela Merkel in the upcoming German elections and has backed President Barack Obama’s call for a nuclear weapons free world. Steinmeier says that the nuclear weapons are “militarily obsolete” and that the United States should remove them, while Merkel opposes this and wants the weapons to remain so Germany retains its NATO influence.