On behalf of the Government and the people of Australia I convey my condolences on the death of former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl.

In Dr Kohl's 16 years as Chancellor of Germany he was central in shaping not only the Germany we see today, but modern Europe.

Chancellor Kohl, in overseeing reunification, laid the foundations for a strong and united Germany.

He was the driving force behind the adoption of a common European currency and cemented Germany’s partnership with France.

His Excellency, General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd), Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, has agreed to represent Australia at the funeral service of the President of Vanuatu.

The Governor-General will depart Australia tomorrow afternoon. The funeral will be held in Port Vila on Wednesday.

His Excellency Womtelo Reverend Baldwin Lonsdale served the people of Vanuatu with dignity and humility.

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