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The Latest: Austria: Anti-migrant Parties Take Early Lead

The Latest: Austria: Anti-migrant Parties Take Early Lead

Sunday, 15 October 2017 11:38 AM

VIENNA (AP) — The Latest on Austria's general election (all times local):

5:25 p.m.

Initial results from Austria's national election give the two parties that focused on concerns about migration with an early lead.

The projections from the SORA polling organization showed the People's Party with 30.5 percent of the vote from Sunday's election and the Freedom Party with 26. 8 percent.

The Social Democrats, which campaigned on the need for social equality, was close behind at 26.2 percent.

If the People's Party wins, its 31-year old leader, Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz, stands good chances of becoming the youngest government leader in Europe

The People's and Freedom parties have called for tightening Austria's borders and quick deportations for rejected asylum seekers.

While the projections are based on initial results, they could herald a coalition between the two parties and a rightward turn for Austria.

5:00 p.m.

Voting in a general election that will decide whether Austria moves to the right after decades of centrist policies has ended.

Final results from Sunday's election aren't expected until later in the week, but provisional results are expected to start rolling in now that polls area closed.

Three parties are vying for first place in the national election: the Social Democrats, the People's Party and the Freedom Party.

The People's Party was favored to win the most votes. The party is part of Austria's current governing coalition. Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz has taken it to the right since becoming party leader in the spring.

The 31-year-old Kurz would become Europe's youngest leader if his party wins and he can form a government.

1:15 p.m.

Final results from Austria's potentially pivotal election aren't expected until later this week.

Provisional results are expected to start rolling in not long after polls close at 4 p.m. But the final count won't be completed until the last of the absentee ballots and ballots cast at polling stations outside a voter's district are counted.

More than 6.4 million Austrians were eligible to vote.

Both the People's Party and the Freedom Party have called for securing Austria's borders and quickly deporting asylum-seekers whose requests are denied.

A strong showing by the two parties would make a ruling coalition between them likely.

10:55 a.m.

Austria's 31-year-old foreign minister is considered the favorite to become the next prime minister after the general election now underway.

Sebastian Kurz would become Europe's youngest leader if his People's Party wins the Sunday election and he can form a government.

Kurz took the center-right party's helm in the spring amid growing strains between the governing Social Democratic-People's Party coalition.

Since then, he has moved the party to the right, particularly on the issues of migration and Muslims. But he avoids the inflammatory rhetoric of the right-wing Freedom Party and its head, Heinz-Christian Strache.

That has made makes Kurz's party appealing to voters sensitive about immigration in the wake of a 2015 mass influx of mostly Muslim migrants into Europe, but who are uncomfortable with the small neo-Nazi fringe the Freedom Party attracts.

7:00 a.m.

Polling places are opening in Austria, where voters will decide whether the country moves right after decades of centrist policies and the result could pave the way for Europe's youngest government leader.

Three parties are vying for first place in Sunday's national election: the Social Democrats, the People's Party and the Freedom Party.

The center-left Social Democrats have campaigned on reducing social inequality. The other two have focused on concerns about immigration and Islam.

Both the People's Party and the Freedom Party have called for securing Austria's borders and quickly deporting asylum-seekers whose requests are denied. Polls show the popularity of People's Party head Sebastian Kurz has put his party ahead.

The 31-year-old Kurz would become Europe's youngest leader if his party wins and he can form a government.

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The Latest on Austria's general election (all times local):5:25 p.m.Initial results from Austria's national election give the two parties that focused on concerns about migration with an early lead.The projections from the SORA polling organization showed the People's Party...
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Sunday, 15 October 2017 11:38 AM
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