Austrian Chancellor Kurz to face no-confidence vote after scandal

AFP - [email protected] • 21 May, 2019 Updated Tue 21 May 2019 12:01 CEST

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz will face a no-confidence vote from MPs on Monday following a scandal that ended his coalition with a far-right party, the speaker of the lower house of parliament said on Tuesday.


"Parliament will hold a special sitting on Monday 27 May," Wolfgang Sobotka told reporters.

Kurz has been under pressure after a corruption scandal broke which forced the resignation of far-right Vice-Chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache and the collapse of the country's coalition government.

Kurz has called for fresh elections after a camera sting forced his deputy, Strache from the far-right Freedom Party (FPOe), to resign on Saturday, just ahead of the EU elections. 

On Monday all remaining ministers from Austria's far-right Freedom Party (FPOe) are to resign from the government after their party colleague Herbert Kickl was fired as interior minister.

The ministers would make good on their threat to resign en masse if Kickl was forced out, the spokesman confirmed to the Austrian APA agency.

Strache stepped down as vice-chancellor and FPOe leader after recordings published by German media Friday showed him offering government contracts in return for campaign help to a fake Russian backer in a villa on the resort island of Ibiza.

Elsewhere in the footage, Strache appears to hint at ways political donations could escape legal scrutiny.

Kickl was FPOe secretary general at the time when any political donations would have been made. Strache on Saturday denied the party had received illegal funds. 

"It is clear Herbert Kickl cannot probe himself," Kurz was quoted by the Kurier newspaper on Monday.

He said the recordings were the final straw in a string of FPOe-related scandals.



AFP 2019/05/21 12:01

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