Excitement about new FPÖ chats | Nachrichten.at

Further chats from FPÖ politicians provide insights into personnel matters in the Lower Austrian police and the Ombudsman’s office. The then Interior Minister Herbert Kickl, now federal party leader, wanted to delay the appointment of Franz Popp as Lower Austrian state police director in 2019, “ZiB1” reported on Saturday evening. In addition, Werner Amon (ÖVP) should be prevented from becoming responsible for the Ministry of the Interior in the Ombudsman’s Office.

Lower Austria’s governor Johanna Mikl-Leitner (ÖVP) is said to have supported Franz Popp, and the former FPÖ leader and vice-chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache wanted to cooperate with her. However, according to “ZiB1”, Kickl wrote to Strache in spring 2019: “Popp doesn’t work without us. I’ll let her fidget, there are other options too. We shouldn’t forget how the lady treated Udo.” He was alluding to Udo Landbauer, now deputy governor. Shortly before the 2018 state elections, Mikl-Leitner ruled out working with FPÖ top candidate Landbauer in connection with the so-called songbook affair. The freedom man was later questioned as a witness and an investigation was discontinued in August 2018.

“… the Mikl will explode”

“You just have to know that if Popp doesn’t do it, the Mikl will explode,” replied Strache. “I know your position, but we are not your vicarious agents,” said Kickl. Popp officially became the new state police director of Lower Austria on July 1, 2020.

The Ombudsman Werner Amon, a former member of the National Council and now a state councilor in Styria, who was nominated by the then coalition partner ÖVP, was also discussed in chats. According to “ZiB1” and “Standard”, Amon should be prevented from becoming responsible for the Ministry of the Interior in the Ombudsman’s Office. “Not that Amon will then check the BMI. Nogo!! Please communicate with decision-makers,” wrote the then Interior Minister and current FPÖ leader Kickl to Strache. FPÖ chats about personnel requests on ORF had already caused a stir.

For the FPÖ, however, the chats confirm Kickl’s “consistent administration” “in the interest of Austrian security.” As Interior Minister at the time, he merely fended off Mikl-Leitner’s “inadmissible interventions” because Popp did not meet the qualifications of a completed law degree, said security spokesman Hannes Amesbauer in a broadcast. Amon, in turn, was “indirectly involved in the BVT affair” due to a friendship.


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