Following the appointment of Michael Link as Coordinator of Transatlantic Cooperation in the Field of Intersocietal Relations, Cultural and Information Policy and Dietmar Nietan as Coordinator of German-Polish Intersocietal and Cross-Border Cooperation, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock issued the following statement (9 March):
Particularly in these difficult times when peace and freedom in Europe are also at stake in Ukraine, strong personal ties are key. With a view to strengthening these ties on both sides of the Oder-Neisse and the Atlantic, the Federal Cabinet today appointed Michael Link as Coordinator of Transatlantic Cooperation and Dietmar Nietan as Coordinator of German-Polish Cooperation. I have been working closely in a spirit of trust with the two of them in the German Bundestag for many years. So I know that they will use their skill and passion to promote our relations and forge even closer ties between our civil societies.
As former Minister of State at the Federal Foreign Office and Director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, Michael Link brings with him a wealth of transatlantic experience. Not least as head of the OSCE election observation delegation at the 2020 US presidential election, he rendered valuable service to our shared transatlantic values of freedom, civil rights and democracy.
For decades now, Dietmar Nietan has been working in and above all beyond the German Bundestag to promote German-Polish relations. As Chair of the Federal Association of the German-Polish Society and member of the governing bodies of the Foundation “Remembrance, Responsibility and Future”, the Foundation for the International Youth Meeting Centre in Oświęcim/Auschwitz, as well as the Liberation Route Europe, he like almost no other embodies German-Polish reconciliation as the foundation for our shared path in Europe.
The United States and Canada are Germany’s closest allies outside Europe. Large areas of common interests, shared challenges and fundamental values form a bond between our democracies on both sides of the Atlantic. The Federal Foreign Office has been appointing a Coordinator of Transatlantic Cooperation in the Field of Intersocietal Relations, Cultural and Information Policy since 1981.
Germany and Poland today enjoy close neighbourly relations not just based on their joint membership of NATO and the European Union. Historical links, brisk trade, cross-border civil-society activities, youth exchanges, numerous partnerships between municipalities and regions as well as a dense network of cooperation in the border region form a stable foundation for our relations. The post of Coordinator of German-Polish Intersocietal and Cross-Border Cooperation at the Federal Foreign Office was created in 2004.