On Wednesday, 14 March, Heiko Maas took over from his predecessor Sigmar Gabriel as Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs. Both Maas and Gabriel warned against the desire to seek isolation at a time of international crises.
Heiko Maas is the seventh Foreign Minister to take over as head of the Federal Foreign Office since German reunification. He served as Federal Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection in the previous administration. In his first speech as Foreign Minister, Maas thanked his predecessor Sigmar Gabriel in particular for his work to secure the release of Deniz Yücel and other political prisoners in Turkey.