A third Australian government minister has resigned amid reports a fresh attempt to oust Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull as party leader is under way.
James McGrath, assistant minister to the prime minister, insisted his resignation was accepted on Wednesday.
On Tuesday Mr Turnbull won a party leadership vote. Ten ministers then offered to resign, including challenger Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton.
Mr Turnbull is under pressure over poor polling and a divisive energy policy.
He initially accepted Mr Dutton’s resignation and that of International Development Minister Concetta Fierravanti-Wells but rejected the other eight, including Mr McGrath’s.
Mr Turnbull’s centre-right coalition will face a general election by May next year, after recently losing a key by-election in Queensland.
On Wednesday evening Mr McGrath posted his resignation letter on Facebookand said he had insisted it be accepted.
Meanwhile Australian media reports said Liberal party MPs were being asked to sign a document calling for a party meeting at which Mr Turnbull would face another challenge.
However reports suggested any meeting was unlikely to take place on Wednesday. (BBC)