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February 19, 1988

Austria rejected a resolution by the Israeli Parliament calling for the dismissal of President Kurt Waldheim, describing it as an insult and urging the Israeli government to disassociate itself from it. A Foreign Ministry statement said Israel's envoy was summoned and told of Vienna's dismay. Austrian Chancellor Franz Vranitzky also rejected the resolution, which called on Austria to force Waldheim's dismissal and put him on trial for his activities in the German army during World War II. "The term war criminal in describing the president must be rejected," he said in a statement. Deputy Chancellor Alois Mock, head of the junior party in Austria's coalition government, said Waldheim's decision to stay in office "should be respected by all democrats." Waldheim has denied any wrongdoing during his army service and has pledged to remain in office.

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