Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

Covid-19: German minister commits suicide after 'virus crisis worries'

FRANKFURT (Germany) — Thomas Schaefer, the finance minister of Germany's Hesse state, has committed suicide apparently after becoming "deeply worried" over how to cope with the economic fallout from the coronavirus, state premier Volker Bouffier said Sunday.

Covid-19: German minister commits suicide after 'virus crisis worries'

A corona patient from France arrives at the Bundeswehr hospital in Ulm, southwestern Germany on March 29, 2020.

FRANKFURT (Germany) — Thomas Schaefer, the finance minister of Germany's Hesse state, has committed suicide apparently after becoming "deeply worried" over how to cope with the economic fallout from the coronavirus, state premier Volker Bouffier said Sunday (March 29).

Schaefer, 54, was found dead near a railway track on Saturday. The Wiesbaden prosecution's office said they believe he died by suicide.

"We are in shock, we are in disbelief and above all we are immensely sad," Mr Bouffier said in a recorded statement.

Hesse is home to Germany's financial capital Frankfurt, where major lenders like Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank have their headquarters. The European Central Bank is also located in Frankfurt.

A visibly shaken Mr Bouffier recalled that Schaefer, who was Hesse's finance chief for 10 years, had been working "day and night" to help companies and workers deal with the economic impact of the pandemic.

"Today we have to assume that he was deeply worried," said Mr Bouffier, a close ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

"It's precisely during this difficult time that we would have needed someone like him," he added.

Popular and well-respected, Schaefer had long been touted as a possible successor to Mr Bouffier.

Like Mr Bouffier, Schaefer belonged to Merkel's centre-right CDU party.

He leaves behind a wife and two children. AFP

Related topics

Wuhan virus Covid-19 Thomas Schaefer Germany coronavirus

Read more of the latest in

Advertisement

Popular

Advertisement

Stay in the know. Anytime. Anywhere.

Subscribe to get daily news updates, insights and must reads delivered straight to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, I agree for my personal data to be used to send me TODAY newsletters, promotional offers and for research and analysis.

Aa