Home Travel & Adventure Austrian Politician Proposes Citizenship Applicants Visit Concentration Camp Memorials

Austrian Politician Proposes Citizenship Applicants Visit Concentration Camp Memorials


Lower Austria’s governor, Johanna Mikl-Leitner (ÖVP), has proposed a new approach as part of efforts to combat anti-Semitism.

Mikl-Leitner suggests that immigrants planning to apply for Austrian citizenship in the future should be urged to visit a concentration camp memorial. The proposal was revealed during the LH conference in St. Pölten on Wednesday, SchengenVisaInfo reports.

On the initiative of Lower Austria, we want all young people in our schools and those who aspire to our citizenship to become allies in the fight against anti-Semitism.

Lower Austria’s governor, Johanna Mikl-Leitner

However, visits should not be compulsory, according to Mikl-Leitner’s office.

Options for the visit could be the Mauthausen concentration camp memorial or the Jewish Museum in Vienna.

Lower Austria’s governor, Johanna Mikl-Leitner said that by visiting a memorial, a Jewish museum or a comparable institution, the country wants to make an effective contribution to better conveying Austria’s basic principles and values.

She also proposes that such a visit should become part of the integration or naturalisation process.

Anti-Semitism has no place here – regardless of whether it is right-wing, left-wing or Muslim.

Lower Austria’s governor, Johanna Mikl-Leitner

Regarding property, Mikl-Leitner, leading the LH conference, considers that progress has been made with the federal housing package and the first easing of KIM regulations.

She and other regional representatives have agreed “not to let up” until the financial market regulator deletes the leading guidelines, according to a report from Kurier.

Lower Austria’s governor, Johanna Mikl-Leitner stressed that Austria does not want to and will not accept the rise in anti-Semitism.

Surge in Anti-Semitism Attacks in Austria

Last year, following the Israel-Hamas war, Austria saw an increase in acts of anti-Semitism.

In October 2023, the secretary-general of the Jewish community in Vienna, Benjamin Nagele, said that anti-Semitic acts multiplied in Austria during the same month.

Besides, Austria’s Israeli Kultusgemeinde was informed of over 70 counts of anti-Semitic attacks. Nagele back then said that in comparison to the incidents reported in the whole of 2022, “this represents an increase of 300 per cent.”

In November last year, Austria took strong actions to intensify the fight against anti-Semitism. The Austrian Federal Minister for the EU and Constitution, Karoline Edtstadler, stressed that Vienna is determined to implement the promise of “Never again” stressing that the country stands against all forms of anti-Semitism.

Supporting Strict Citizenship Criteria

Rules for acquiring citizenship in Austria are often considered among the strictest; and yet Austrian citizens support the country’s current rules for acquiring citizenship. This was also confirmed in the poll by the People’s Party, which showed that three-quarters of the population wanted to keep citizenship rules intact.

Amongst others, the same poll revealed that two-thirds of the population consider that the ten-year wait for citizenship should remain for those wishing to become Austrian citizens.

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