Germany's Social Democratic Party (SPD) leader Martin Schulz and SPD parliamentary group leader Andrea Nahles attend the SPD's one-day party congress in Bonn, Germany, January 21, 2018. Photo: Reuters/Wolfgang Rattay

Germany’s Social Democrat Party (SPD) leader Martin Schulz has resigned from his position, marking the end of a precipitous fall from grace, described as “one of the more spectacular in Germany’s post-war period.”

The Express warns that his resignation, and the SPD’s turmoil, signal increased risk of new elections. Such an outcome would be the nail in the coffin of the tenuous grand coalition agreed to by SPD leadership and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU alliance.

Three powerful SPD regional associations have reportedly declared they will block any attempts to appoint Andrea Nahles, who has been nominated as interim leader of the SPD until an election can be held.

Against the backdrop of the leadership drama, SPD members will begin voting next week on whether to join a new coalition under Merkel.

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