Austrian minister resigns amid thesis plagiarism scandal | Austria

Austrian minister Christine Aschbacher resigned from her cupboard submit accountable for labour, households and youth on Saturday following allegations that a few of her college work was plagiarised.

A Conservative from chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s OeVP occasion, Aschbacher stated she had stepped all the way down to “defend my household”, complaining of “hostility, political agitation and assaults … with insufferable power”.

Aschbacher’s 2006 masters thesis displayed “plagiarism, incorrect quotations and lack of know-how of the German language”, alleged blogger Stefan Weber, who specialises in sniffing out tutorial fraud.

On the time, she graduated with excessive marks from the College of Utilized Sciences in Wiener Neustadt, south of the capital Vienna.

Weber has levelled the identical allegations at a thesis she submitted in Could final yr – within the depths of the first wave of coronavirus – to the Technical College of Bratislava in neighbouring Slovakia.

He claimed the work contained “never-before-seen depths of gobbledegook, nonsense and plagiarism” and that greater than one-fifth of the textual content had been lifted from different sources with out citations, particularly an article from Forbes journal.

Underneath assault by the opposition, Aschbacher “rejected” what she referred to as Weber’s “insinuations”.

Kurz wrote on Twitter that he “revered” her determination to resign, after the scandal piled stress on a authorities dealing with criticism for its administration of the second wave of Covid-19, broadly seen as chaotic. The chancellor added that he would title a successor on Monday.

Educational plagiarism is a daily cost levelled at politicians within the German-speaking world, the place leaders typically brandish postgraduate {qualifications}.

In Germany, two Conservatives, Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg and Annett Schavan, stepped down from the defence and schooling ministries in 2011 and 2013 over comparable scandals, whereas the present centre-left households minister, Franziska Giffey, has been dogged by plagiarism allegations for years.

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