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The Neutrality of Austria

Amidst the Tensions Surrounding the Russian-Ukrainian War

On 19 May 2022, the President of the FPÖ Political Academy and Foreign Policy spokesman of the FPÖ parliamentary party Dr Axel Kassegger, gave a talk at an event organised jointly by the FPÖ Political Academy and the Liberal Club on Austrian neutrality in the context of the current war between Russia and Ukraine.

Dr Kassegger began his address with an overview of the current situation in Ukraine and a summary of the Austrian government’s attitudes and actions to date. He criticised Austria’s foreign policy reaction as being one-sided and condemned the self-imposed restrictions of the Austrian media landscape.

He went on to explore in detail the causes of and reasons for the conflict and described its impacts on the immediate region. He also addressed the geopolitical implications of the conflict. In particular, he said that the impending shortage of food on the global market due to the lack of Ukrainian exports will in the foreseeable future trigger a dramatic movement of refugees from sub-Saharan Africa.

Kassegger finished by outlining how Austrian foreign and security policy will have to develop if it is to be equipped for an increasingly uncertain future. Austria’s future cannot lie in a military alliance such as NATO. Instead, there is an urgent need to increase funding for the Austrian Armed Forces. This is the only way to ensure a comprehensive national defence for Austria in the future and for Austria to be perceived internationally as a sovereign and neutral state.

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