Robert Schuman Biography

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Who is Robert Schuman? Information about Robert Schuman biography, life story.

Robert SchumanRobert Schuman (1886-1963), French political leader who promoted European economic unity through the Schuman Plan. He was born in Luxembourg (city) on June 29, 1886. He was brought up in Lorraine, then a province of Germany, attended German universities, and began the practice of law in Metz. Because he refused to serve in the German Army in World War I, he spent the war years in a German prison.

In 1919, when Lorraine was returned to France, he was elected to the French Chamber of Deputies as a representative of Moselle. He was a member of the PDP (Parti Democratique Populaire) and concentrated on finance. After World War II, during which he had been imprisoned by the Germans and later fought with the French Resistance, he returned to the Chamber of Deputies. He was a founder of the M RP (Mouvement Republicaine Populaire), a reformoriented party of liberal Catholics who worked for European unity. He became finance minister in 1946 and again in 1947, and in November of that year was chosen premier. Strikes were settled in a few weeks, but he lost power in July 1948 over his military budget. In August he again became premier briefly.

From 1948 to 1952 he was foreign minister in ali cabinets, but he refused to serve in the cabinet of Pierre Mendes-France because of the chamber’s refusal to ratify the European Defense Com-munity, which Schuman ardently supported. In 1950, while foreign minister, he advanced the Schuman Plan, which proposed to put national coal and steel resources under a supranational authority. It went into force in 1952 as the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and became a forerunner of the Common Market.

In February 1955 he became minister of justice in the cabinet of Edgar Faure. In 1958 he was elected to the Fifth Republic’s first National Assembly, and from 1958 to 1960 he was president of the European Parliament Assembly. He died near Metz on Sept. 4, 1963.

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