Bamako (Reuters) – The series of glitches in the government planes are not broken: Federal foreign Minister Heiko Maas has remained at the conclusion of his five-day visit to West Africa due to hydraulic damage in Mali.

His medium-range machine of the type A319 was able to bring him on Thursday evening as planned by the Malian capital of Bamako back to Berlin. The SPD politician took it well. “I’m now flown more than 300,000 km without any problems,” he said. Eventually, it will catch everyone.

A larger replacement machine of the type A340 will now start on Friday morning at 9 a.m. at Cologne/Bonn airport to Maas and his Delegation to pick up. The air force assured on Twitter that you land at 15 o’clock, and then after 90 minutes again to start. This should work, would Maas land with 19 hours delay in Berlin.

The foreign Minister, is since Sunday in West Africa and had visited Mali, the neighboring country of Burkina Faso and Sierra Leone. Travelling with him are three members of the Bundestag, as well as nearly 40 employees, journalists, and security forces. The planning amendment to the head of the Delegation, announced in the evening at a cultural event in Bamako, he actually wanted to drive to the airport. Instead, it went back to the Hotel.

The flight readiness of the German armed forces uses the A319 for Short – and medium-range routes. The machine has 44 seats and has a range of slightly more than 7000 kilometers. A spokesman for the air force told the German press Agency, on the machine, a hydraulic leak had been detected in an order of magnitude, the “lying outside the tolerance limit”.

In the past few months, there had been breakdowns in the pre-flight readiness. German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) came at the end of November to late for the G20 summit in Buenos Aires. Development Minister Gerd Müller (CSU), stayed in January for a long time in Zambia, hanging, and even had to cancel a visit to Namibia. Federal President of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier was in November due to an engine defect for hours in South Africa and, a little later, then once more in Ethiopia. And in October, rodents paralysed in Indonesia, the machine of the Vice-Chancellor and Finance Minister Olaf Scholz (SPD).

The CSU-politician Müller had complained loudly about the glitches. They were a disaster for Germany’s reputation as a High-Tech country, he scolded. The loss of the brand “Made in Germany”.

Currently, 14 aircraft from the manufacturer, Airbus, and Bombardier to flight readiness. Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen (CDU) has now announced the acquisition of three new long-haul aircraft in order. “This is also necessary, I think, to remember all,” she said at the beginning of February at the announcement of this step.


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Teodora Torrendo is an investigative journalist and is a correspondent for European Union. She is based in Zurich in Switzerland and her field of work include covering human rights violations which take place in the various countries in and outside Europe. She also reports about the political situation in European Union. She has worked with some reputed companies in Europe and is currently contributing to USA News as a freelance journalist. As someone who has a Masters’ degree in Human Rights she also delivers lectures on Intercultural Management to students of Human Rights. She is also an authority on the Arab world politics and their diversity.