In Austria and elsewhere, refuse the banalisation of far-right parties

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Brussels, 15 January 2018. On the occasion of the Austrian Chancellor’s European Tour in Paris and Berlin on 12 and 13 January 2018, the European Association for the Defense of Human Rights (AEDH) considers that the composition of the Austrian Government chaired by Christian Kurz cannot be regarded as normal and innocuous. 

At the heart of Europe, it is particularly shocking that a legal government thought it necessary to ensure its majority by bringing in the FPÖ, a party coming from the country’s farthest right-wing. Openly xenophobic, radically opposed to everything it considers foreign, culturally racist, fundamentally anti-European, the FPÖ is directly the heir and the successor of a Nazi party whose protagonists and ideas have not been judicially removed from Austrian politics. Following the world’s instability, in Austria, as in other Member States of the European Union, openly fascist and racist parties either entered government coalitions, or reached the margins of power, or finally weigh negatively on public policies. They are trying to engage their respective countries on path deemed impossible since 1945.

AEDH calls on Austrian citizens to remain particularly vigilant in monitoring the political course of their country. AEDH recommends European citizens to take stock of the return of the far-right in their own country and fight against any attempt of coordination among those parties throughout Europe in the name of a ethnic community that does not exist but would require the exclusion, even the elimination of the “others”, the foreigners, the Jews, the Arabs, the blacks, the Roma, the disabled, the mentally ill, the members of trade unions, the members associations…

AEDH learned that Chancellor Kurz is neither racist nor xenophobic, nor of course Nazi. The Austrian political direction will therefore be measured in the light of his actions. AEDH expects the governments of the Member States and the European institutions to remain vigilant in their efforts to prevent far-right wing deviations and abuses from becoming normal and acceptable ideas.