Politicians in Austria walked out of a speech by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday, placing signs in their places that said “A place for peace” and “A place for neutrality.”
Zelensky was addressing the Austrian parliament via video feed. The conservative party called the Party of Freedom had warned that they would stage some kind of demonstration if the Ukrainian president showed up in parliament to ask for military support.
“It is sad that the FPO is the only party in parliament that takes our ever-lasting neutrality seriously, thereby also standing up for peace,” the party leader Herbert Kickl said in a statement on Tuesday.
Austria’s current public-facing position is that it supports Ukraine politically but will not send weapons or engage militarily in its conflict with Russia because neutral is neutral. Apparently, some politicians really mean that.