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2011-03-18 06:46:05 来源：VOA
German Minister Resigns Amid Plagiarism Scandal
Germany's defense minister resigned Tuesday amid a scandal involving allegations that he plagiarized his doctoral thesis.
Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg said stepping down was "the most painful step" of his life, but that the controversy has made it impossible to carry out his duties.
The president of the University of Beyreuth said last week the institution had withdrawn the minister's title of doctor because Guttenberg's thesis violated the university's standards.
The popular minister has acknowledged making errors in his writing, but insisted he did not deliberately cheat.
Guttenberg said Tuesday he was "always ready to fight," but had reached his limit.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has supported Guttenberg.
The scandal involving his 475-page doctoral thesis erupted after a German newspaper reported that chunks of the work were copied from other scholars without properly crediting them. The allegations earned Guttenberg the nickname of "Baron Cut-and-Paste."
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