Weekly Briefing: Is the Pandemic Really Over?

More+ ♦ Published: June 10, 2021; 13:20 ♦ (Vindobona)

In a meeting with his Italian counterpart, Austrian Federal President Van der Bellen stated that the "pandemic as we have experienced it can be considered overcome." Is this the case? Find out more about this week's developments.

Take five minutes to catch up on this week’s essential news! / Picture: © Wikimedia Commons / Filip Nohe [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5/deed.de)], modified and edited

Covid-19: Austria's Vaccination Progress and Travel Restrictions

Austrian Federal President Van der Bellen and his Italian counterpart Mattarella are positive about the near future with regard to Covid-19. They state that the "pandemic as we have experienced it can be considered overcome."

Many recent developments support this thesis: Austria has successfully vaccinated more than half of its population and less restrictive measures apply for public life.

Meanwhile the travel industry found some breathing space, since many travel restrictions fall as well. Only recently, the U.S. has eased its regulations for travel to Austria.

European Cohesion - also with Western Balkans

Together with German President Steinmeier, Van der Bellen demanded European cohesion for the life after the pandemic.

This also counts for cooperation with the Western Balkans, according to Austrian Foreign Minister Schallenberg and National Council President Sobotka: During the latter's visit in Hungary, he emphasized the importance of including the Western Balkans in a cohesive Europe.

Schallenberg and many other EU Foreign Ministers have a similar opinion and stressed this issue at a joint conference with representatives from Western Balkan countries.

What Else Happened This Week?

The United Nations in Vienna has installed homes for over 50,000 bees. Read more about the introduction of bee hotels and bee hives.

Austria values its LGBTIQ community. The Vienna Pride has started and many Austrian politicians support the movement.

The Jewish Museum Vienna has a new website. The new homepage gives a nice overview of the exhibitions for the interested public and raises the museum's digital presence to a new level.

In an internationally cooperated strike against organized crime, Austria has seized more than half a million euros, hundred of kilograms of narcotics as well as dozens of weapons. Read more about the FBI-organized campaign!