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Austria swears in new chancellor

VIENNA: Newly appointed Austria’s Chancellor Karl Nehammer provides a press commentary right through a handover rite on the Chancellery in Vienna, Austria the day prior to this. – AFP

VIENNA: Austria’s Internal Minister Karl Nehammer was once sworn in as the rustic’s 3rd chancellor in as many months the day prior to this, after the fallout from a corruption scandal shook his ruling Other folks’s Birthday celebration. President Alexander Van der Bellen officially swore Nehammer in at a rite at Vienna’s Hofburg Palace simply after 1 pm native time (1200 GMT). The former Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg presented his resignation on Thursday, hours after his predecessor and shut best friend Sebastian Kurz introduced he was once resigning as head of the conservative Other folks’s Birthday celebration (OeVP) within the wake of a corruption scandal.

On Friday the OeVP nominated Nehammer, 49, to take over as birthday party head and chancellor. Kurz’s resignation additionally caused that of his shut confidante Gernot Bluemel as finance minister. Nehammer’s first act has been to habits a cupboard reshuffle, sending Schallenberg again to his earlier submit as overseas minister and appointing new finance, internal and training ministers. The brand new cupboard contributors had been sworn in in conjunction with Nehammer. The OeVP is hoping its coalition executive with the Inexperienced birthday party will now have the ability to transfer on from the saga surrounding Kurz.

‘Wunderkind’ Kurz’s fall
The scandal that introduced down Kurz — who in 2017 changed into the sector’s youngest democratically elected head of presidency at 31 — erupted in early October.
Prosecutors ordered raids at his workplace and the finance ministry over allegations that Kurz’s interior circle used public cash to pay for polls adapted to spice up his symbol and make sure sure protection in one of the most nation’s greatest tabloids.

Kurz has denied any wrongdoing, announcing he hopes to have his day in courtroom to turn out his innocence. Kurz wrested keep watch over of the OeVP in 2017 and received two elections. A hardline anti-immigration stance — shared by means of Nehammer — was once key to his good fortune. On the other hand, the OeVP’s first coalition collapsed in 2019 when its far-right junior spouse changed into engulfed in a corruption scandal. That ended in early elections in 2019 which Kurz once more received, forming a coalition with the Vegetables. After stepping down as chancellor in October, he have been extensively seen as biding his time for a political comeback, however introduced on Thursday that he was once leaving politics to spend extra time together with his spouse and new child son.

Tough wintry weather forward
Against this to Kurz, who had concentrated energy round himself and a small team of depended on aides, beneath Nehammer the birthday party’s historically robust regional heads are anticipated to wield extra affect. Born in Vienna, Nehammer labored within the military for a number of years ahead of turning into a communications adviser. He changed into a lawmaker in 2017 and internal minister in January 2020 months ahead of Austria confronted its first jihadist assault, which killed 4 other people remaining November.

He now faces the instant problem of steerage the rustic thru a troublesome wintry weather beneath the shadow of a recent wave of the coronavirus. Austria went again right into a partial lockdown on November 22 to struggle emerging case numbers and force on in depth care devices. It was once additionally the primary nation within the EU to announce it will make vaccination obligatory, with draft regulation for the measure because of be introduced this week. Over the medium time period Nehammer can also be hoping to salvage the OeVP’s ballot rankings. It has slumped to 2d position at the back of the centre-left Social Democrats for the reason that scandal round Kurz broke. – AFP

 

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