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German football president resigns after comparing VP to Nazi

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) – The president of the German Football Association, Fritz Keller, resigned on Monday, almost a month after comparing one of the organization’s vice presidents to a Nazi-era referee.

At a Federation meeting on April 23, Keller likened Rainer Koch to Nazi-era judge Roland Friesler. This prompted state and regional officials to express no confidence in Keller’s leadership. Keller apologized, which he said Koch did not accept.

Keller said, “I hereby accept personal responsibility for my unknown loss at a board meeting on April 23, which should remain a sad low point in the leadership misery of the federation known for its German DFB initials.” He resigned ahead of an ethics committee decision.

As a participant in the 1942 Wansi Conference, Fraser was one of the Nazis responsible for organizing the Holocaust. He became chairman of the People’s Court, where he handed down some 2,600 death sentences to opponents of the Nazi regime.

The DFB said last week when Keller first announced his resignation that Koch, a Munich court judge, and another vice-president, Peter Peters, would be co-chairs of the transition period.

In a lengthy statement announcing his resignation on Monday, Keller said the DFB was suffering from a struggle between internal forces and a lack of transparency. “My resignation will not solve the DFB և football’s problems,” he said.

Keller, 64, who has been in office since 2019, is the last of the last four DFB presidents to step down amid a scandal.

Keller’s predecessor, Reinhard Grindel, resigned, announcing a luxury watch amid allegations of undeclared earnings amid dissatisfaction with his leadership. Former federation president Wolfgang Niersbach և Theo wan Wansiger were both ousted in 2006. Due to corruption allegations related to Germany in the World Cup.

Germany must host the European Championship in 2024.

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