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School book recalled in presidential vote fiasco

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School book recalled in presidential vote fiasco
Alexander Van der Bellen. Photo: ORF
13:01 CEST+02:00
An Austrian publisher has said it will withdraw a newly printed school book that lists Alexander Van der Bellen as the country's current president.

Trauner Verlag said it had waited for the result of the original May 22nd runoff vote, in which the left-leaning Van der Bellen narrowly beat the right-wing Freedom Party's Norbert Hofer, before printing the latest edition of "Political Education and Law". It now has to take back 2,500 copies.

In July, however, Austria's supreme court ordered a rerun after the Freedom Party claimed major irregularities. This week, the rerun planned for October 2nd had to be postponed because of faulty postal ballot envelopes.

Trauner Verlag says it will reprint the book. The new version won't list any current president and will be delivered by mid-October.

The new date for Austria's trouble-plagued presidential election is now December 4th.

Meanwhile, there has been speculation that Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka could be sued by around 30 European printing companies for failing to put the contract for printing the ballot papers out to tender. It's not clear if it was legal for him to give the contract directly to the official state printing company.

Some 45,600 Austrians who reached the age of 16 between April 24th and December 4th will be able to vote in the rerun of the presidential election.


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