V4 Report:  Positive start to coalition talks between the conservative FPO and Austria’s leader Kurz

V4 Report: Positive start to coalition talks between the conservative FPO and Austria’s leader Kurz

The conservative Freedom Party (FPO) said coalition talks with Austria’s leader Sebastian Kurz made a “very, very good start” on Wednesday.

“It was today a very, very good start to negotiations … a positive mutual gauging by the negotiating teams,” FPO leader Heinz-Christian Strache told a joint news conference with Kurz after the first round of talks.

** We have been optimistic of a Kurz/FPO coalition since early 2017. Although not guaranteed, we remain optimistic that this new government coalition will become a reality soon. According to Reuters, both are “pro-European” and desire a “slimmed down” version of the EU in order to hand back power to the European nation states. Kurz and Strache believe the EU should focus on tasks like trade and securing the external borders.

*** We do remain perplexed regarding the media’s obsessive attempts to link today’s Freedom Party (FPO) with the “ex-Nazis in the 1950s”. Really? Is Reuters that jaded and shallow that they would reach back 67 years in an attempt to smear today’s members. Most were probably not even born yet.

If Reuters insists on playing these types of games, they could find something more current and relevant. For instance, Federica Mogherini – the current High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy – was a member of the Italian Communist Youth Federation from 1988 until 1996. She joined the “Youth Left” after the dissolution of the Italian Communist Party. Does Reuters include this tag with every story they do on her? Of course not.

We believe it’s time to move forward. Reuters may not like the results of the election, but Austrians have spoken. We wish the best to Sebastian Kurz and Heinz-Christian Strache in their negotiations.