Germany: Merkel offers Macron help with Notre Dame rebuild

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel offered her condolences to France for the Notre Dame cathedral fire during a joint press conference with Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov in Berlin on Tuesday.

Merkel stated that Notre Dame is not only a symbol of Christianity for France, but also a site of the common European heritage shared by the two nations. The chancellor said she offered German expertise to France to help in the reconstruction of the cathedral.

“To see this beautiful cathedral, the heart of Paris, up in flames touched us all very deeply. I contacted the French president yesterday evening already and had a phone conversation with him this morning bringing him the condolences of the German people,” she said.

The iconic spire of the centuries-old Gothic structure, as well as large parts of the roof, collapsed after a fire engulfed Notre Dame in Paris on Monday. The main structure of the building, including its two bell towers, has reportedly been saved and is no longer in danger of collapse.

French President Emmanuel Macron has pledged to rebuild the 12th century cathedral and an international fundraising campaign is under way to gather money for the repairs.

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