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German Defense Minister Lambrecht announces resignation

This file photo taken on Sept 16, 2022 shows German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht during a press conference on the sidelines of a conference of the German Armed Forces Bundeswehr in Berlin. (JENS SCHLUETER / AFP)

BERLIN – German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht has asked Chancellor Olaf Scholz for her dismissal, she said in a statement on Monday, the culmination of growing skepticism about her ability to bring the German army into shape against the backdrop of the Ukraine conflict.

"Today I asked the chancellor to dismiss me from the office of federal minister of defense," Lambrecht, a member of Scholz's Social Democratic Party (SPD), said in the statement.

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Her decision to step down comes as Germany is under pressure to approve an increase in international military support for Kyiv, and Germany's defense capabilities have been called into question after several Puma infantry tanks were put out of service during a recent military drill.