Austria. President Heinz Fischer was re-elected in April
for another six years on the mainly ceremonial post of head
of state. Fischer, who was the candidate of the Social
Democrats, won by a very wide margin; he got about 79
percent of the vote. Distant second was the right-wing
populist FPÖ's disputed candidate Barbara Rosenkranz, who
gained 15 percent. Rosenkranz, a 51-year-old ten-year-old
mother, is married to a man who has belonged to a banned
right-wing extremist party and is alleged to have Nazi
sympathies himself. Her political message was described as
hostile to immigrants, Islam and feminism.
In all three state elections held during the year, the
Social Democratic SPÖ, which leads the country's coalition
government, which also includes the conservative OVP,
backed. ÖVP also lost some, while FPÖ increased. In
Burgenland and Styria, FPÖ received around 10 percent of the
vote, and in Vienna, the xenophobic party received a full 27
percent. The SPÖ, which ruled "red Vienna" for decades but
now lost its majority, chose to form the country's first
red-green government at the state level.
COUNTRYAAH, police announced in June that a record seizure of over a
million child pornographic images was made in a
53-year-old's home. The man, who was arrested, was also
suspected of assaulting his stepchildren. The seizure was
described as one of the largest in Europe.
Six Indian men were sentenced in September to prison for
an assault in a Sikh temple in Vienna the year before. One
was sentenced to life imprisonment and several others to
long imprisonment for the murder of a visiting preacher and
attempted murder of several other temple visitors. The
attack, which was due to a religious dispute, triggered
violent protests in the Indian state of Punjab.