Spindelegger: "The Austrian Foreign Ministry is at your service world-wide"
Vienna, 26 October 2012 – “I am pleased to see so many Austrians taking the opportunity to visit the Foreign Ministry at the Open House Day with which we are marking the Austrian National Holiday today. The motto of the Open House Day is “World-wide at your service” and visitors are informed about all the various tasks and activities of our Ministry“, Vice-Chancellor, Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger said in a welcoming address to the huge crowd of visitors.
One of the focal areas of this year’s event was the European Union. State Secretary Reinhold Lopatka engaged in a dialogue about Europe and answered the question of interested citizens. There was also an exhibition of original documents of Austria's accession to the EU, shown for the first time. Another focus was on Austria's foreign policy, and in particular the future regions of the Danube and Black Sea areas. "Today's Open House Day is an excellent opportunity for us to demonstrate what we have achieved and what objectives we have set ourselves for the coming years", Spindelegger said.
A highlight for many visitors was the virtual discovery tour of the Austrian Ministry for European and International Affairs on facebook. The Ministry recently joined facebook to facilitate even more convenient dialogue with interested Austrians. The various activities and the Citizens' Help Desk are presented on www.facebook.com/aussenministerium. "The services we provide to our citizens are very important for us – also in the world wide web", the Foreign Minister said.
The youngest visitors of the Open House Day had the opportunity to attend a music workshop and to have their faces painted with flags. Other highlights were, among other things, live music from Guatemala and Madagascar, an exhibition of Austrian Development Cooperation, and the presentation of various projects of Austria's international cultural policy.
Vice-Chancellor, Federal Minister Spindelegger was very pleased by the large number of people who took advantage of this event to visit the ministry. "People are clearly very interested in the work of the Foreign Ministry and what Austrian embassies and consulates can do for them worldwide. The many visitors today are clear proof of this”, he concluded.
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