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Former Austrian Chancellor Kurz Announces He's Leaving Politics

© REUTERS / LEONHARD FOEGERAustria's former Chancellor Sebastian Kurz attends a session of the parliament in Vienna, Austria November 17, 2021
Austria's former Chancellor Sebastian Kurz attends a session of the parliament in Vienna, Austria November 17, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.12.2021
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On 9 October, chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced that he would step down amid an investigation by the anti-corruption prosecutor's office against him.
Former Austrian chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced he was quitting politics.
"It's a new chapter in my life that opens today," he told reporters in Vienna, saying he wanted to devote time to his family.
He would hand over the office of party chairman of the Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) as well as the parliamentary group leader, Kurz said. The decision was not easy for him, he added. But he doesn't feel sad. Developments over the past few months have also contributed to the decision.
"I look forward to the day when I can prove in court that the charges against me are untrue," Austria's ex-chancellor stressed.
At the same time, Kurz noted that he did not claim that he had never done anything wrong. The ex-chancellor admitted that he used to make the wrong decisions.
"I am neither a saint, nor a criminal, but a man with strengths and weaknesses," he said.
Kurz resigned as Austrian chancellor on 9 October amid an investigation by the anti-corruption prosecutor's office against him, but remained the head of the party and the leader of its parliamentary faction.
The anti-corruption prosecutor's office later in October sent a request to the Austrian National Council with the aim of lifting Kurz's parliamentary immunity.
Kurz himself welcomed the parliament's intention to remove parliamentary immunity from him in order to complete an investigation by the anti-corruption prosecutor's office against him on suspicion of complicity in bribery.

In turn, the politician said that he did not consider himself guilty and would prove his innocence, stressing that his innocence had already been confirmed by an independent legal examination.
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