09:06 GMT +314 November 2019
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    Russian President Congratulates Austrian Leaders on Neutrality Day in Open Letter

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    VIENNA (Sputnik) - The letter, addressed to President Alexander Van der Bellen and Chancellor Brigitte Bierlein, was posted on Facebook by Russian Ambassador in Austria Dmitry Lubinsky.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin sent an open letter to Austrian leaders on Friday congratulating them on the national day of neutrality.

    "My sincere congratulations on the national Austrian day of the adoption of a constitutional law on permanent neutrality," Putin wrote.

    He emphasiыed the history of friendly relations and mutual respect between the two countries and wished prosperity to the people of Austria.

    "I am convinced that continuing our bilateral dialogue and constructive cooperation in various spheres would be in the interest of our peoples and the European continent," he said.

    Austria was under German control shortly before World War II broke out and was occupied at the end of the war by Allied forces until 1955 when the parliament passed a constitutional law that enshrined its neutral status.

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