German politician resigns after being caught up in face mask deals

A lawmaker from German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) is stepping down after his company earned hundreds of thousands of euros on deals to procure face masks.

Nikolas Loebel on Sunday announced that he would resign from his parliamentary mandate at the end of August and would not run for the Bundestag again. He also announced the immediate termination of his membership in the CDU’s parliamentary group and issued an apology.

Loebel confirmed on Friday that he was involved in businesses that dealt with face masks. His company earned commissions of around 250,000 euros (300,000 dollars) for brokering sales contracts for masks between a supplier in the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg and two private companies in the cities of Mannheim and Heidelberg.

“I take responsibility for my actions and draw the necessary political consequences,” said the 34-year-old politician.

Pressure had been growing on Loebel to resign in recent days, as Baden-Wuerttemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate head to polls this month.

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