German Chancellor Angela Merkel warmly congratulated her outgoing defence minister Ursula von der Leyen for being elected the first woman and the first German in more than half a century to run the European Commission.
In a report by Reuters, Merkel praised von der Leyen in a statement posted on Twitter and made remarks about the newly elected executive’s integrity, saying, “I’m glad because a persuasive and committed European will become president of the European Commission. Even as I lose a long-serving minister, I gain a new partner in Brussels.”
Von der Leyen, a German conservative and the country’s defence minister, is a close ally of Angela Merkel. She received her dismissal certificate from Berlin mayor Michael Mueller, deputising German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, during a ceremony at Bellevue Palace in Berlin, Germany, on July 17th.
Von der Leyen will replace Jean-Claude Juncker on November 1st.