Heinz-Christian Strache (right), chairman of the anti-Islamization Freedom Party roasted the German Chancellor for allowing an unlimited amount of Muslim illegal aliens which he claims has left Europe on the verge of civil war. Talking to supporters, Strache argued “the uncontrolled influx of migrants alien to our culture who seep into our social welfare system… makes civil war in the medium-term not unlikely.”
UK Express (h/t Terry D) Strache added that his party’s presidential candidate, Norbert Hofer, “will be there for all Austrians” in a rallying speech to drum up support ahead of the general election. Hofer has attempted to keep a neutral tone in a bid to broaden the typical appeal of the Freedom Party from an anti-immigration stance to the wider Austrian population ahead of a re-run of the earlier election.
Yet the 45-year-old’s recent election posters carry the phrase “so help me God” – a term which has been slammed by both Islamic and Christian officials who say introducing God into the campaign is not appropriate.
Three branches of the Protestant church in Austria released a joint statement denouncing the slogan. It reads: “God cannot be instrumentalised for one’s own intentions or for political purposes. “We consider that mentioning God… to attack other religions and cultures indirectly amounts to an abuse of his name and religion in general.”
The Freedom Party claim Hofer used the rallying phrase as it came “directly from the heart” and “is strongly anchored in Christian and Western values” which the party holds. Two-thirds of Austrians identify as Catholic while just four per cent are Protestant.
The Freedom Party narrowly lost the election by just 31,000 votes to Alexander Van der Bellen’s left-leaning Green party, but the result was ruled void after voting irregularities were discovered. The initial re-run of the election was due to take place in October but has been pushed back to December after defects were found in the postal vote envelopes.