Claudia Roth

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For the scientist, see Claudia Roth (paleobiologist).
Claudia Roth (2013)

Claudia Benedikta Roth (born 15 May 1955 in Ulm) is a German Green Party politician. She was one of the two party chairs from 2004 to 2013 and is serving as one of the vice presidents of the Bundestag since October 2013.


Claudia Benedicta Roth began her artistic work, which she always regarded as also being political, in the 1970s as a trained artistic director at a theatre in Memmingen. She then worked at the municipal theatre in Dortmund and the Hoffmanns-Comic-Teater, and subsequently became involved with the political rock band "Ton Steine Scherben".

She came into contact with the Green party on election campaign tours. In 1985, she became press spokesperson for the Greens in the Bundestag, despite being a newcomer to this line of work.

Member of the European Parliament[edit]

In July 1989, Roth was elected for the first time as a Member of the European Parliament for the Greens.

Amongst other things, she was a member of two committees of inquiry in the European Parliament, namely the Committee of Inquiry into Racism and Xenophobia and the Committee of Inquiry into Links between Organized Crime and Drugs, as well as of the EC-Turkey Joint Parliamentary Committee.

In addition, she became a member of the new Committee on Civic Liberties and Internal Affairs, the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Sub-Committee on Human Rights.

From 1989 to 1990, she was also deputy chairperson of the Green Group in the European Parliament.

In July 1994, she was again elected to the European Parliament as a lead candidate of Alliance 90/The Greens. She was chairperson of the Green Group in the European Parliament until 1998.

During this second term as an MEP, she was again a member of the Committee on Civic Liberties and Internal Affairs, the Sub-Committee on Human Rights and the EC-Turkey Joint Parliamentary Committee, of which she was elected deputy chairperson. She also remained involved with the Foreign Affairs Committee as a substitute member.

Member of the German Bundestag[edit]

Claudia Roth ended her work as an MEP when she became part of the Alliance 90/The Greens parliamentary group in the Bundestag after the German federal election, 1998. She became a member of the Committee on the Affairs of the European Union and a substitute member of the Committee on Internal Affairs of the German Bundestag.

Furthermore, she was elected chairperson of the new Committee on Human Rights and Humanitarian Aid.

On 9 March 2001, she was elected Federal chairperson of Alliance '90/The Greens at the party conference in Stuttgart and resigned as a Member of the Bundestag at the end of March 2001 as a result. At the same time, she was spokesperson of the Alliance '90/The Greens on women's affairs.

In October 2002, she was elected to the Bundestag as Bavarian lead candidate for Alliance '90/The Greens. Since then, she has been a member of the Bundestag's Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Committee on Cultural and Media Affairs. She is also cultural affairs spokesperson for the Alliance '90/The Greens parliamentary group in the Bundestag and chairperson of the German-Turkish Parliamentary Friendship Group.

Between March 2003 and October 2004, Claudia Roth had been the Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office.[1]

She became Federal Chairperson of Alliance '90/The Greens again in October 2004 and was re-elected as such several times, most recently in November 2010.

On Friday 17 March 2006, she reported herself to the German police for displaying a crossed-out swastika on multiple demonstrations against Neo-Nazis, and subsequently got the Bundestag to suspend her immunity from prosecution. She intended to show the absurdity of charging anti-fascists with using fascist symbols: "We don't need prosecution of non-violent young people engaging against right-wing extremism."

In 2012 she failed to become the number one woman in the federal election camapaign for 2013. After this defeat she was unsure to run again for the position of leader of the board of directors of the party. Volker Beck started a support campaign in favour of her in social media networks and called it candystorm.

Political career[edit]


Roth has been criticized for her positive relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran. Along with fellow lawmakers Günter Gloser, Monika Grütters, Luc Jochimsen and Peter Gauweiler, she travelled to Iran in 2010 to meet with Ali Larijani, Manouchehr Mottaki and others; the trip was heavily criticized by international human rights organizations.[2] In February 2013, she was reprimanded by German media outlets and Iranian dissidents for warmly greeting the Iranian ambassador to Germany, Alireza Sheikhattar, with a high five. Iranian Kurdish dissidents hold Sheikhattar responsible for the murder of Kurds during his tenure as governor of Iran's Kurdistan and West Azerbaijan provinces from 1980 to 1985.[3]


External links[edit]