Barack Obama released a statement Monday expressing concern about the success of two far-right parties in Austrian elections on Sunday. The Freedom Party and Jorg Haider’s Alliance for the Future of Austria garnered 29 percent of the vote combined, while the two moderate parties each received less than 30 percent of the vote for the first time. Here’s Obama’s statement:
I am very concerned about last Sunday’s election results in Austria, in which two openly xenophobic far-right parties won nearly thirty percent of the vote. Extremism, bigotry, and anti-Semitism offend our most deeply held transatlantic values and have no place in the 21st century.
As Austria’s voters and leaders review the election results and consider the way forward, I urge people of good will and courage in Austria to stand firmly for the principles of pluralism and tolerance that have, for the past 60 years, served Austria and Western Europe so well. Failure to do so would have serious consequences in Europe and beyond.