Maas: Not thinking about dismissal | free press

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The Minister of the Interior and the Minister of Defense are also criticized, but most calls for resignation because of the debacle in Afghanistan are directed at Heiko Maas. He wants to move on first.

Berlin (dpa) – Foreign Minister Heiko Maas says he is not thinking about stepping down because of the debacle in Afghanistan.

When asked if he had thought about it, the SPD politician told the magazine “Der Spiegel”: “For the past few days I have only thought about one thing, which is to draw conclusions from the mistakes we have all made and ensure that we get as many people as possible from Afghanistan.” That is “the damn duty of everyone who has been involved in the development over the past few days and weeks.”

In recent days, calls have been made from various quarters for the Minister of Foreign Affairs to resign. CSU chief Markus Söder spoke out in favor of the fact that Maas will no longer belong to the cabinet after the federal elections in September. The SPD politician said in the interview published Friday: “I would first wait and see which party belongs to the next federal government. That’s more open than many thought. And what my professional future looks like is really the last thing on my mind right now.”

At the same time, Maas called for a debate on the significance of Bundeswehr missions. “The failure in Afghanistan should not lead us to completely deny ourselves responsibility in the world for foreign and security policy,” he said. “But Afghanistan must not repeat itself again.” NATO partners should discuss whether the defense alliance was even capable of carrying out missions outside its actual mandate – including whether NATO’s job was to ensure peace and human rights.

Maas also called on European NATO members to become more independent from the US. “We need to consult a lot more politically before we send our soldiers anywhere. Otherwise, there is a risk that we only understand Washington’s decisions — regardless of who is president there.”