Speech on the National Day Van der Bellen: “This pandemic is a burden for us all”

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In his television address on the occasion of the national holiday, Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen calls on Austrians not to let the pandemic get them down.

“Austria will cope with this. Together,” said the head of state in the short speech that was broadcast on ORF in the evening. He also pleads for more composure in dealing with the crisis and urges “timely and comprehensible communication”.

“This pandemic is really a burden for all of us,” says Van der Bellen. It directly attacks the basic human need for security, closeness and community. He also misses the public encounters in the Hofburg, which are otherwise customary on National Day. “But will we let this get us down? No, of course not.”

The President of the Federal Republic of Austria calls for not seeking mutual blame, but to fight the pandemic with science, reason and compassion. “This virus is neither red nor blue, nor turquoise or green or pink,” said Van der Bellen. It can only be brought under control with “fact-based action” and with “timely and comprehensible communication”.

Van der Bellen therefore calls on the population to observe the corona rules and to turn their impatience into something positive. “Anger and fear are bad advisors. They cloud our thinking and guide our actions in the wrong directions.”

He himself is confident that Europe will find its way back to each other after the initial difficulties. Van der Bellen hopes that the European Union’s 750 billion euro investment package will provide the basis for the continent to blossom again. And on the national holiday in a year’s time, he said, “hopefully the worst is behind us.”

  • Hector Pascua, with reports from orf.at. Picture: screenshot, orf.at
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