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    Austria reacts to performance by EU minister in Luxembourg

    Hürriyet Haber
    04.10.2005 - 00:00 | Son Güncelleme:

    Steps taken backing away from its previously firm stance on the "privileged partnership" question by Viennese EU leadership have reportedly thrown the country of Austria into domestic political turmoil. Uwe Scheuch, general secretary of the Austrian government's coalition party, Partnership for the Future, accused Austrian EU Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik of "giving up under pressure from the EU." Said Scheuch, "The minister needs to explain to all Austrians how we lost our power at the accession talks." Meanwhile, the leader of the Conservative Freedom Party, Heinz-Christian Strache, said that Plassnik had "used the Turkey question to gain votes in the last election, but had remained silent when it came to foreign policy."  A spokesperson for the opposition Austrian Green Party, Eva Glawischnig, noted that "the Turkey argument had been kept alive only for tactical purposes to begin with."  Defending her performance in Luxembourg, Austrian FM Plassnik said "for a document of which people had said 'you will not be able to alter even a comma,' I think the result we have come up with is a success." Austrian Prime Minister Wolfgang Schussel also defended the Austrian stance and performance in Luxembourg, saying "We have for the first time been able to bring the phrase 'capacity for acceptance' in as a criteria. The phrase 'the strongest link' is no different from 'priviliged partnership.'"
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