Austrian conservative Kurz and far right to hold coalition talks

By REUTERS
October 24, 2017 16:19
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Austrian conservative leader Sebastian Kurz will hold coalition talks with the far-right Freedom Party (FPO), both sides said on Tuesday, bringing the anti-immigration party a step closer to power, which it last held more than a decade ago.

Having won last week's parliamentary election with 31.5 percent of the vote, Kurz's party is far short of a majority, needing a partner to gain control of parliament and form a stable government. Only two parties have enough seats to do that with -- the Social Democrats (SPO) and the FPO.

Kurz, 31, took a hard line on immigration in the campaign that left little space between him and the FPO, and both parties capitalized on a widespread feeling that the country had been overrun during Europe's migration crisis in 2015 and 2016.

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