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Helmut Kohl, Chancellor Who Reunited Germany, Dies at 87

• nytimes.com, By CRAIG R. WHITNEY and ALAN COWELL

"We mourn," his party, the Christian Democratic Union, said on Twitter in announcing his death.

With his diplomacy, resolve and readiness to commit huge sums to ending his country's division, Mr. Kohl was remembered by many as a giant of epochal times that remade Europe's political architecture, dismantled the minefields and watchtowers of the Iron Curtain and replaced the eyeball-to-eyeball armed confrontation between East and West with an enduring, if often challenged, coexistence between former sworn foes.

A physically imposing man — he stood 6 feet 4 inches and weighed well over 300 pounds in his leadership years — Mr. Kohl pursued his and his country's political interests as Germany's chancellor with persistent, even stubborn, determination. He could be "an elephant in a china shop," as he described himself, and he overcame European opposition to unification the same way he handled political opposition at home: by the force of a jovial yet dominating personality.

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