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German President Takes Selfies with Citizens on ‘Open Palace Day’ | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. (AFP)

Berlin, London – German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier received on Saturday thousands of visitors in his presidential palace as part of popular celebrations held in the palace’s garden.

During the celebration dubbed “Open Palace Day”, visitors got the chance to look behind the doors of the president’s headquarters and to take selfies with him.

In a statement, Steinmeier expressed deep gratitude for over 23 million German citizens interested in volunteer work in the country, saying that he hoped to invite them all to the presidential palace.

“They are the real bloc in our society that guarantees its cohesion,” he said.

Referring to the parliamentary elections set to be held in two weeks, Steinmeier stated: “Use your greatest civil right and partake in the elections.”

According to the presidential bureau’s data, over 4,000 people visited the palace on Sunday.

During the celebrations, many companies, organizations and initiatives presented their activities that are aimed at confronting social challenges and helping citizens.

Former President Joachim Gauck was the first to organize these celebrations during his term. On Friday, Steinmeier received thousands of guests concerned in volunteer work and praised their role in standing up to those who fight democracy.

The second day of the celebrations saw the attendance of the former German President Christian Wulff and his spouse.