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Alois Mock in 1983


Alois Mock (born June 10 1934) is a politician and member of the Austrian People's Party (ÖVP). He was Vice Chancellor of Austria from 1987 to 1989. As foreign minister he helped take Austria into the European Union.

Born in Euratsfeld, Lower Austriamarker, Mock went on to study law at the University of Viennamarker and later international law in Bolognamarker and Brusselsmarker. In Vienna, he became a member of K.A.V. Norica Wien, a Roman Catholic student fraternity, which is a member of the Cartellverband.

From 1961 to 1966 Alois Mock advised the Bundeskanzler Josef Klaus on European Economic Community and EFTA policy and for the OECD in Paris. In 1966 he became Klaus' cabinet secretary and from 1969-1970 was the youngest education minister Austria had ever had.

After the Nationalrat elections of 1971 - where the Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPÖ) under Bruno Kreisky won a majority - he became a member of parliament and mayor of Euratsfeld. From 1971 to 1978, "Lois" chaired the ÖAAB, the most important grouping of the ÖVP. From 1978 to 1987 he was chairman of the parliamentary party and from 1979 was also federal party chairman. He was later to be succeeded by Josef Riegler, Erhard Busek and Wolfgang Schüssel.

In 1979, Mock became the President of the European Democrat Union (EDU), and from 1983 to 1987 also of the international Christian democratic International Democratic Union (IDU).

At the 1983 elections the ÖVP got almost the same percentage as Kreisky's SPÖ, who did not want to continue without an absolute majority and therefore retired.

Following the 1986 elections, from 1987 to 1989 Alois Mock was Austrian Vice Chancellor in the government of Franz Vranitzky (SPÖ). He held the position of foreign minister from 1987 to 1995, leading Austria into the European Union. He became one of Austria's most popular politicians.

In June 1989, in the area of Odenburg, he cut the wire of the Iron Curtain at the fortified border with Communist neighbour Hungary, together with his Hungarian counterpart Gyula Horn. During the following months thousands of East Germanmarker citizens could therefore emigrate to Austria and West Germanymarker. This marked the beginning of the fall of Communism.

Together with Hans-Dietrich Genscher of Germanymarker he decided to acknowledge the independence of Sloveniamarker and Croatiamarker, but Europe nevertheless could not prevent the Yugoslavian wars.

In November 1989 Mock was one of the founders of the Central European cooperative called Pentagonale, which later grew from 5 countries to the 16 of the CEI (Central European Initiative). In 1999 he retired from parliament due to Parkinson's disease.

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Preceded by:
Josef Taus
ÖVP Party Chairman
1979–1989
Josef Riegler
Preceded by:
Norbert Steger
Vice Chancellor of Austria
1987–1989
Preceded by:
Peter Jankowitsch
Foreign Minister of Austriamarker
1987–1995
Succeeded by:
Wolfgang Schüssel

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