Bonn speaker alleges smear


BONN - Germany's beleaguered parliamentary speaker, Ms Rita Suessmuth, accused of misusing official aircraft, said yesterday that political rivals were responsible for a smear campaign against her.

Ms Suessmuth, Germany's top woman politician, told Weltam Sonntag that she had paid for private visits to Zurich where her daughter lives out of her own pocket and used military transport planes only for business.