GERMAN CHANCELLOR GERHARD SCHROEDER WALKS PAST MIROW BEFORE A STATEMENT IN BERLIN.
Thomas Mirow, top candidate of the Hamburg state elections lays his flowers on the podium during a statement with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder (R) in Berlin March 1, 2004. Schroeder said on Monday his government would stick to its economic reform policies despite another bruising defeat in a state election in Hamburg on Sunday. Moving to staunch speculation his unpopular programme of welfare and spending cuts could be reversed, Schroeder told journalists the measures might have hurt his Social Democrats in their former stronghold Hamburg, but there would be no retreat. Letters read "The important thing". REUTERS/Gabrizio Bensch REUTERS JOH