The Green politician Hans-Christian Ströbele is dead. He died on Monday at the age of 83, as his lawyer Johannes Eisenberg announced on Wednesday. The former RAF lawyer Ströbele, whose trademarks were a red scarf, bright white hair and his bicycle, was the first Green to be elected to the Bundestag by direct mandate in the Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg constituency in Berlin in 2002 and thus went down in party history. Ströbele co-founded the Greens and sat in the Bundestag for 21 years.

He only left active politics in 2017, at the age of 78, but initially continued to run his law firm in Berlin. Before joining the Greens, he was active in what was then the Extra-Parliamentary Opposition (APO). Together with the later Federal Interior Minister Otto Schily and the later right-wing extremist Horst Mahler, he first defended activists of the student movement as a lawyer, then also terrorists of the Red Army Faction (RAF).

Chancellor Olaf Scholz paid tribute to the late Green Party co-founder Hans-Christian Ströbele. “His drive was to do politics and change society,” Scholz wrote on Twitter on Wednesday. “With Christian Ströbele, Germany has lost a combative politician who has shaped the political debate for decades. My thoughts are with his family.”

The son of a chemist from Halle an der Saale was a symbolic figure, especially for the left wing of the Greens, and never shied away from confrontations with his own party friends – for example with the former foreign minister and vice chancellor Joschka Fischer. Ströbele was against German participation in the Kosovo war, the deployment of the German armed forces in Afghanistan and the Hartz IV reforms. In Parliament, he repeatedly voted against the line of his group.

In recent years in the Bundestag, Ströbele has devoted himself intensively to the subject of secret services and made headlines with a visit to US whistleblower Edward Snowden in Moscow.

Attorney Eisenberg wrote in his statement: “He decided for himself that he no longer wanted to continue the long ordeal that his illness had imposed on him and that he reduced life-sustaining measures. He was fully conscious to the last. Not the spirit, the body became his torment and left him on August 29, 2022.”

In recent years, Ströbele has been battling cancer, reports the “Zeit”.

The social association VdK has urged the federal government not to forget pensioners in their plans to relieve the burden. “With every week that nothing happens, this anger grows,” says the social association.

The boss of a Saxon IT company has announced that he wants to set up a “hardship fund for energy costs” from which his employees in need can be supported with up to 2000 euros. He hopes that the government will pave the way and the grants can be paid out without taxes.

After the debate about salaries at ARD, the focus is now on Deutschlandfunk, also a public broadcaster and GEZ-financed. An internal listing shows: Here, too, the bosses and ex-bosses collect properly.