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Martin Schulz resigns as German SPD chief

Chinadaily / BERLIN – German Social Democrat leader Martin Schulz announced Tuesday to resign with immediate effect as SPD chairman, according local media Focus online.

The SPD presidium has nominated the SPD parliamentary group leader Andrea Nahles as the new Party leader, a decision pending approval. The election will take place on April 22 at a Party conference in Wiesbaden, Schulz said in Berlin.

“For me, this is the last speech as chairman of the SPD,” Schulz was quoted by Focus online as saying. “It’s a difficult job at times, but I retire without bitterness and resentment.”

The German Press Agency (DPA) reported that Hamburg’s First Mayor Olaf Scholz will provisionally take over the position of SPD leader until the April election. Several state associations had formally objected to the immediate takeover of the top office by Nahles.

The change is a hope by the party’s leadership committee to contain the bitter infighting which has continued despite Schulz’s resignation from the role as SPD leader, as well as his more recent surrender of the prospective post as foreign minister in a new “grand coalition”.

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