Thousands protest in Vienna against mandatory vaccination

Thousands of people took to the streets of the Austrian capital on Saturday to protest against the government’s plans to launch a Covid-19 vaccine next month.

“The government has to go!” the crowd sang at a rally in central Vienna that had been a regular event on Saturday.

The Austrian parliament is set to vote next week on the issue, which has rocked the country as the number of coronaviruses increased.

In November, the government announced a fourth closure and said it would make the vaccine compulsory for all Austrians, the first European Union to do so.

A survey by Profil magazine found that 51 percent of respondents were opposed to making jabs since February, of which 34 percent were against compulsory vaccination and 17 percent wanted to wait. The study found that 45 percent of Austrians prefer a forced vaccine since February.

The poll found that Chancellor Karl Nehammer and anti-Social Democrats were hotly contested in the first 25 per cent, followed by the Freedom Party, the main opposition to government policy, at 20 per cent.

The Greens, a minor ally in the alliance, had 11 percent of the Neos free, while the MFG vaccination party got 6 per cent.

Health officials say more than 1.4 million people have been infected and about 14,000 people have died from Covid-19 since the outbreak began in early 2020.

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