Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

The Battle for Venezuela: Pressure mounting on Maduro ahead of sunday's vote

Read more

ENCORE!

Actress Helen Mirren on TV honours and tackling sexism

Read more

FOCUS

Teething problems for French President Macron's party

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Libya's Haftar vows to deal with terrorists 'through weapons'

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

USA: Fierce battle over Kentucky's only abortion clinic

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Socks and selfies deep': Canadians slam Rolling Stone's Trudeau tribute

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Panda-monium! French zoo awaiting rare panda birth

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Can Facebook keep growing its earnings?

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Qatar 'financing and supporting terrorism', Egypt FM says

Read more

Europe

Austrian political parties agree to hold snap elections in October

© Roland Shlanger, APA / AFP | Archival picture shows the federal assembly at the parliament in Vienna in January 2017

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2017-05-17

Austria's snap election will be on October 15, party chiefs agreed on Tuesday after the centrist "grand coalition" collapsed.

The vote could see the far-right Freedom Party (FPOe), whose candidate narrowly failed to be elected president in December, enter government.

The coalition between Chancellor Christian Kern's Social Democrats (SPOe) and the People's Party (OeVP) was meant to govern until 2018.

But after months of bickering, the centre-right OeVP on Sunday appointed a new chief, Sebastian Kurz, who called for early elections.

The anti-immigration FPOe, like other populist parties in Europe, has seen its support rise on the back of concerns about immigration, terrorism and falling living standards.

And like elsewhere, Austria's two main parties, which have governed the EU country since 1945, have seen their support slide as they fail to connect with voters.

The FPOe, led by social media-savvy Heinz-Christian Strache, 47, is running neck-and-neck with the SPOe on around 30 percent in opinion polls.

The OeVP is lagging behind in the low 20s. However, surveys suggest that Kurz, who is only 30, could revive his party's fortunes and even make it the most popular force.

Austria's parties will likely on Wednesday present a motion for setting the election date, the Austria Press Agency reported said. It was unclear when this will pass, however.

(AFP)

Date created : 2017-05-16

  • PORTRAIT

    Left-leaning Van der Bellen to become Austria's new president

    Read more

  • AUSTRIA

    Austria votes as far right gets second chance at presidency

    Read more

  • AUSTRIA

    Re-run of Austrian presidential vote postponed due to faulty ballots

    Read more

COMMENT(S)