Merkel snapped shopping at Berlin supermarket

BERLIN Thu Aug 9, 2007 10:42am BST

1 of 2. German Chancellor Angela Merkel addresses an annual pre-summer news conference about the work of the government in 2007 in Berlin July 18, 2007.

Credit: Reuters/Hannibal Hanschke

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BERLIN (Reuters) - Photographs of Angela Merkel on a recent trip to a supermarket were published in German daily Bild on Thursday -- earning the German Chancellor lavish praise from the paper for her modesty and common touch.

Merkel visited the supermarket, inside Berlin's Friedrichstrasse train station a few minutes walk from the chancellery, at the end of July and bought oranges and lemons, according to a Bild reader who took the photos.

Having queued with other shoppers, she paid with cash from her own purse, the reader said. "It all seemed ridiculously normal, except for the three bodyguards watching the whole thing," he added.

Bild columnist Franz Josef Wagner said the trip showed Merkel was in touch with ordinary people.

"Our chancellor doesn't mess around on millionaires' yachts. She queues in the supermarket and takes her change. She is a simple woman. A great woman. A supermarket woman."

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