BERLIN, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- German Education Minister Annette Schavan denied in an interview published on Monday that she plagiarized her doctoral thesis.
"I at no time attempted to deceive while working on my dissertation," she told the Rheinische Post newspaper, adding that she never deliberately plagiarized though could not remember details of the thesis writing which was done in 1980 in the University of Dusseldorf.
Schavan, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU), said she would make a statement soon, after having kept silence for months after the plagiaristic accusation started.
Anonymous accusation of plagiarism first appeared in May on the internet, and the University of Dusseldorf responded by carrying out an investigation on the issue.
According to media reports, the university found "signs of a plagiaristic method" in Schavan's work, while passages on 60 of the 351 pages of the dissertation were said to be questionable. Decision on whether she could keep her doctor title is expected to be made soon.
Schavan is not the first prominent German politician exposed to PhD thesis plagiarism accusations. In 2011, the then Defence Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg and vice president of the European Parliament Silvana Koch-Mehrin both resigned from their offices due to plagiarism scandals.