Austrians turn on Kurz’s party after corruption claims

By Reuters
Published : 17 Oct 2021 08:31 PM | Updated : 18 Oct 2021 10:09 AM

Austrians have turned on the conservative Austrian People's Party, the senior partner in their coalition government, after party leader Sebastian Kurz quit as chancellor over corruption allegations, according to a poll published on Sunday.

Support for the conservative OeVP has crashed from 34% to 26% in the wake of the affair, according to the survey published by newspaper Kurier on Sunday.

The outcome puts the party, which installed former foreign minister Alexander Schallenberg as the new chancellor, only marginally ahead of the opposition Social Democrats (SPO)'s approval rating of 24%, the paper said.

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Kurz, 35, quit as chancellor under pressure from his junior coalition party, the Greens, after prosecutors placed him under investigation on suspicion of various degrees of bribery, corruption and breach of trust. He denies any wrongdoing.

Kurz remains leader of his party and is now also its top lawmaker in parliament, triggering opposition claims he is still exercising power behind the scenes.

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