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GUE/NGL President Gabi Zimmer has issued the following statement following the presidential vote in Austria:

“I would like to congratulate Alexander Van der Bellen on his election as Austria’s new president.”

“It is good to see many more people voted for him this time than for Norbert Hofer of the far right. Nevertheless, this election should be seen as a warning instead of being a watershed moment against the far right such as Strache, Le Pen and Wilders. This is because the underlying reasons which give rise to the far right are still there.

“Inequality and the growing rich-poor divide, job insecurity and unemployment continue to strike fear amongst more and more EU citizens. The far right will continue to unscrupulously exploit these conditions for their own gain.

“As long as the EU continues with its austerity policies and is not willing to offer an alternative that benefits ordinary people instead of multinationals and banks, more people will choose the far right as the alternative to EU´s current neoliberal model.”

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