German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, has appointed Boris Pistorius as Germany’s new defence minister.
Pistorius, who was appointed on Tuesday, according to Scholz, is the “right person” to steer the armed forces through an era of momentous change.
The appointment became necessary, following the resignation of Christine Lambrecht on Monday, with Germany under pressure to send battle tanks to Ukraine.
Pistorius, 62, who is a member of Scholz’s Social Democrats and interior minister of Lower Saxony state, is a surprise choice for the post, as other better known politicians were thought to be in the running, such as Eva Hoegl, the parliamentary commissioner on armed forces and Employment Minister Hubertus Heil.
Scholz said, “Pistorius is an extremely experienced politician who has administrative experience, has been involved in security policy for years and, with his competence, assertiveness and big heart, is exactly the right person to lead the Bundeswehr (armed forces) through this era of change.”
Arise News reported that Pistorius’ appointment ends a streak of three female defence ministers, as well as upending a promise by Scholz to keep his cabinet gender-balanced when he became chancellor in 2021.
Born in Osnabrueck, Pistorius studied law and worked as a lawyer before entering politics in the 1990s, eventually becoming mayor of his native town.