Alexander Schallenberg sworn in as Austria chancellor after Sebastian Kurz quits amid corruption inquiry


Former overseas minister Schallenberg was sworn in by President Alexander Van der Bellen on the Hofburg palace in Vienna. Schallenberg, 52, is a profession diplomat and an in depth ally of the former chancellor.

Kurz will proceed to guide the center-right Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP) and can stay a member of Austria’s parliament.

A spokesperson for the chancellery advised CNN on Sunday that Kurz “enjoys the full support of the people’s party.”

Opposition politicians say this implies Kurz will successfully stay in control of the nation however with Schallenberg, who is comparatively new each to politics and to the ÖVP get together, as a figurehead.

Pamela Rendi-Wagner, chief of the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPÖ), stated Kurz would stay a really influential determine.

On Saturday, Kurz introduced that he was stepping down from his place, days after his workplace was raided by Austrian prosecutors investigating him and members of his group on suspicion of bribery and breach of belief.

Sebastian Kurz resigns from his post as Austrian chancellor on October 9, 2021, just days after he was implicated in a corruption scandal.

The 35-year-old is below investigation over claims that authorities cash was used to make sure optimistic protection in a every day newspaper, Austrian prosecutors introduced Wednesday.

Kurz stated the corruption allegations in opposition to him have been “wrong,” and denied that he had used authorities cash for political functions, however stated: “I want to make space to guarantee stability.”

Opposition events had threatened to convey a vote of no confidence in opposition to Kurz in parliament on Tuesday.

Over the weekend, Van der Bellen stated belief in Austria’s political system had been “massively hit,” and that it was now as much as politicians to restore the injury via “serious and concentrated work,” in response to public service broadcaster ORF.

‘Manipulated’ outcomes

Kurz is below investigation alongside 9 different people and three organizations, in response to a press release from the Office of Austria’s Attorney General for Economic Affairs and Corruption (WKStA).

Raids have been carried out in a number of areas — together with two authorities ministries — final Wednesday as a part of the inquiry, in response to the prosecutor.

“Between 2016 and at least 2018, budgetary funds from the finance ministry were used to finance exclusively party-politically motivated, sometimes manipulated surveys conducted by an opinion research company in the interest of a political party and its top management,” the WKStA assertion stated.

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz resigns amid corruption scandal

“The survey results were published (without being declared as an advertisement) in the editorial section of an Austrian daily newspaper and other media belonging to the same group,” the assertion learn, including that “suspected payments were made in return to the media company.”

Austrian media have recognized the every day newspaper concerned within the case as tabloid-format every day Österreich (Austria). The paper has rejected the accusations and denied any wrongdoing in a number of op-eds printed this week.

Kurz led the ÖVP into authorities in 2017, in coalition with the far-right Freedom Party, having turned the refugee inflow of 2015 right into a vote-winner on the poll field.

He arrived in energy simply as Chancellor Angela Merkel’s grip in neighboring Germany gave the impression to be weakening. He appeared eager to dismantle at the very least a few of her welcoming method to migrants and take the continent down a extra hardline path, regardless of insisting frequently on his help for the European venture.

He and his authorities misplaced a vote of no-confidence in May 2019, following a corruption scandal prompted by a secretly-filmed video of his vice-chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache. But they returned to energy after successful a common election September of the identical 12 months.

CNN’s Kara Fox, Martin Goillandeau and Niamh Kennedy contributed reporting.

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