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Germany

Berlin SPD Chief Quits Over Funding Scandal

The chairman of Berlin's Social Democratic Party (SPD), Peter Strieder, who has been embroiled in a funding scandal, announced on Wednesday he was giving up all his political posts. These include the regional chairmanship of the SPD, the office of development senator of Berlin as well as elector for the upcoming presidential elections. The 51-year-old said the move wasn't an admission of guilt, but rather was necessary to limit further damage to the city of Berlin. Berlin's public prosecutor is currently investigating Strieder for his role in the controversial financing of a Berlin entertainment center, the Tempodrom. Strieder, together with Berlin's finance secretary Thilo Sarrazin, is suspected of having authorized the channeling of millions of city funds towards the Tempodrom without a corresponding permission from the city state's parliament. A lawyer and former mayor of the Berlin district of Kreuzberg, Strieder has led the Berlin SPD since 1999.