May 14, 2017 / 6:01 PM / 3 months ago

Austrian conservatives pick Foreign Minister Kurz as leader

Austria's Foreign Minister and designated new leader of the People's Party (OeVP) Sebastian Kurz addresses a news conference in Vienna, Austria, May 14, 2017.Leonhard Foeger

VIENNA (Reuters) - The leadership of Austria's conservative People's Party, the junior party in the country's coalition government, has appointed Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz as its new head, Kurz told a news conference on Sunday.

Kurz, 30, is widely seen as the party's best chance of boosting its ratings and surpassing the far-right Freedom Party, which is running first in opinion polls, followed by Chancellor Christian Kern's Social Democrats. He has already called for a snap parliamentary election, which Kern has said is now inevitable.

Reporting by Francois Murphy; Editing by Keith Weir

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