Bleiburg commemoration could be banned – Austrian media

NEWS 24.11.202109:48

The Austrian government could prohibit political gatherings in Bleiburg, Austrian media outlets reported on Tuesday.

The commemoration is held annually in Loibach Field near Bleiburg, Austria for soldiers of the Nazi-allied Croatian Ustasha regime and civilians killed there at the end of World War II.

Paying tribute to a Fascist regime must be forbidden, as the (Austrian) constitution outlaws such commemorations, according to a report of an expert commission that will propose the ban on the Bleiburg political gatherings.

The expert group consists of historians, jurists, Catholic Church representatives, and officials from the interior ministry and the Carinthia authorities.

The Die Presse daily newspaper reported that only a requiem mass could be allowed.

The commission was set up in 2020 in accordance with the decision of the parliamentary parties – ÖVP, SPÖ, the Greens and Neos — and the decision on that think tank was prompted by discussion on the political dimension of the commemorations in the recent years.

Also, last year, the local Catholic Church withheld its approval for the requiem mass, and the religious service was then held on a private estate.

The report of the commission is expected to be unveiled on Wednesday.