Admin l Friday, January 6, 2023
ST PETER’S SQUARE – The popular conservative leader of the German state of Bavaria, Markus Söder, called on Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Friday to immediately dismiss the country’s embattled defence minister.
The call for Scholz to fire Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht follows criticism of Lambrecht over a video posted to Instagram on New Year’s Eve.
In it, she took stock of 2022, a year marked by the war in Ukraine, while her words were repeatedly drowned out by the whistling of New Year’s Eve rockets and fireworks.
Lambrecht was “simply overtaxed with her task,” Söder said at the start of a closed meeting of conservative parliamentary members in Bavaria.
“Every additional day creates even more uncertainty. And if she herself has a hard time recognizing that, maybe the Chancellor has to act,” Söder said. “That is a real leadership task for the Chancellor.”
He said it was an “absolute leadership weakness” on Scholz’s part to leave Lambrecht, whom Söder described as the weakest member of Scholz’s government, in charge of such an important ministry.
“The Federal Ministry of Defence is the most important ministry as far as Germany’s credibility as an international security partner is concerned,” he added. “Nothing has gone right there all year – breakdown after breakdown.”
Lambrecht, like Scholz, is a member of the Social Democratic Party, who form a three-party coalition government with the Green Party and the Free Democrats.