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Yearbook 2009

Austria. In mid-March, the lawsuit began against Josef Fritzl, who was revealed almost a year earlier to have held his own daughter in prison for 24 years. According to countryaah, the daughter had given birth to seven children, six of whom survived and three spent their entire lives trapped in the basement. Fritzl was prosecuted for rape, incest, slavery and murder. During the trial, he pleaded guilty on all counts, and was sentenced to life in a forensic psychiatric ward.

2009 Austria

The right-wing populist party BZ made a record choice in the state of Carinthia in March. The party received 45 percent of the vote. The result was partly interpreted as a tribute to the party's founder and strong man Jrg Haider, who died in a car accident a few months before the election. But it was also seen as a sign of a crisis in the Social Democratic SP, which lost close to 10 percentage points in voter support, largely to BZ. SP also lost ground in the election in Salzburg, which was held at the same time, although the party there remained the largest, and in the EU elections in June. In the state elections in Vorarlberg and Upper Austria in September, support for the SP was record low. In both cases, the xenophobic FP - which BZ was formed - progressed strongly, even though the conservative VP remained the largest. The Social Democrats' large electoral losses made it difficult for SP leader Werner Faymann.

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