It has been one year since a 20-year-old assassin killed four people and injured 23, some seriously, in Vienna’s city center, around the Schwedenplatz nightlife area. On November 2, 2021, on the occasion of the anniversary of the crime, ceremonies of remembrance were held in the presence of many relatives – for example in the Ruprechtskirche and at Desider-Friedmann-Platz.
Friedmann Square is the place where the nine-minute act of terror had originated. Today there is a memorial stone here, where Mayor Ludwig laid a wreath on Tuesday morning. He was accompanied by Cardinal Christoph Schönborn and representatives of all municipal council factions. With the commemoration one wants to express how much one condemns the act of terror. But the family members of the victims should also be comforted, said Ludwig, even if this does not help to overcome the pain. There is “little comforting that we can say to the relatives of the victims,” he said. Deputy Mayor Christoph Wiederkehr (Neos) also stressed that the city stands united against any form of terrorism and violence.
The Republic’s commemoration ceremony finally took place in the late afternoon in the Ruprechtskirche, with, among others, Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg (ÖVP), Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen, Vice Chancellor Werner Kogler (Grüne) and other representatives of the federal government. Only a few steps away from the church, at Ruprechtsplatz, the assassin had been shot by police officers. The music group “Weil ma glaubn”, which rehearsed in the hour of the attack in the Ruprechtskirche, accompanied the event musically.
“November 2, 2020 is a date that will never again be indifferent,” said Chancellor Schallenberg. He stressed the obligation to stand by the bereaved and injured in the best possible way. “Hatred, intolerance and extremism have no place in our open society,” he maintained. Moreover, he said that society had stood together in this crucial hour.
Federal President Van der Bellen finally read out the first names of the four victims and expressed his condolences to the bereaved families. “There is no word that could come close to consoling,” he said. “But I ask the relatives: Please accept our condolences.” They are now trying to “heal the wounds together,” he said. The only thing left for the Republic to do, he said, is to set an example, for example with the Terror Victims Fund. “But of course, nothing can compensate for what happened.”
“Why does something like this happen? Why does it happen again and again?” Cardinal Schönborn asked himself in conclusion in his address. However, he said, today is not the moment to speculate about that.
“So much humanity has been shown”. This side of Austria, he said, is the one to look to. “It gives hope and confidence”, the Cardinal said
- source: diepresse.at/picture: Mandy Salonga
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