wikileaks ico  Home papers ico  Cables mirror and Afghan War Diary privacy policy Privacy
Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05VIENNA2253
2005-07-05 14:55:00
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Embassy Vienna
Cable title:  

MFA LEGAL ADVISER HANS WINKLER BECOMES AUSTRIA'S

Tags:   KNAR  PHUM  PGOV  AU 
pdf how-to read a cable
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						UNCLAS VIENNA 002253 

SIPDIS

INFO EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

SENSITIVE

STATE FOR EUR/AGS, EUR/ERA, EUR/OHI

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KNAR PHUM PGOV AU
SUBJECT: MFA LEGAL ADVISER HANS WINKLER BECOMES AUSTRIA'S
NEW STATE SECRETARY FOR EUROPEAN AFFAIRS


THIS MESSAGE IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED - PLEASE
PROTECT ACCORDINGLY. NOT FOR INTERNET DISTRIBUTION.
UNCLAS VIENNA 002253

SIPDIS

INFO EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

SENSITIVE

STATE FOR EUR/AGS, EUR/ERA, EUR/OHI

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KNAR PHUM PGOV AU
SUBJECT: MFA LEGAL ADVISER HANS WINKLER BECOMES AUSTRIA'S
NEW STATE SECRETARY FOR EUROPEAN AFFAIRS


THIS MESSAGE IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED - PLEASE
PROTECT ACCORDINGLY. NOT FOR INTERNET DISTRIBUTION.

1.(SBU) On July 4, Hans Winkler, heretofore the Austrian
Foreign Ministry's Legal Advisor and number three
official, became new State Secretary in the MFA.
European Affairs will be the core portfolio for this new
postition. Winkler, who is not affiliated with any
political party, is a top diplomat and will be a key
asset for the GOA in carrying out the EU Presidency in
the first half of 2006.

2.(U) Some opposition politicians criticized the
appointment of an additional State Secretary. The
government of Wolfgang Schussel had resisted for years
creating the position for fear of seeming to expand the
government. However, the opposition Greens welcomed
Winkler's nomination as a necessary step for the EU
Presidency. Winkler stressed that he will not receive
any additional staff, but will head over 100 MFA
personnel in charge of preparing for and carrying out the
EU Presidency. With the creation of a State Secretary to
handle EU affairs, the GOA follows the practice of
several other EU countries. During its last EU
Presidency in 1998, Benita Ferrero-Waldner, who is now EU
Commissioner, was Austria's State Secretary for European
Affairs.

3.(U) The Foreign Ministry has not yet announced who
will assume charge of the legal office. Christian Ebner,
Winkler's deputy, will move to Winkler's state
secretariat. However, Winkler and Ebner will remain

SIPDIS
engaged on Holocaust restitution issues.

Bio
---
4.(U) 60-year old Winkler was born in Vienna. After
obtaining a law degree from the University of Vienna, he
attended the Diplomatic Academy and then, in 1970, joined
the MFA. His foreign assignments included West Berlin,
Strassbourg, Belgrade, Cairo and Washington. He served
as Director (Assistant Secretary equivalent) of the
Americas Desk in Vienna from 1996 to 1999. He became
Legal Adviser in 1999, and was key negotiatior in the
Holocaust restitution negotiations in 2000 and 2001.
Since 2002, he has also served as deputy MFA Secretary
General effectively the third-ranking official in the
MFA. He is married to Christa Winkler. They have a
daughter.

Comment
--------------
5.(SBU) The assignment of Winkler is an important step
toward a successful Austrian EU Presidency in 2006.
Winkler has been a key adviser to Chancellor Schuessel
and Foreign Minister Plassnik. He has been an excellent,
cooperative and flexible interlocutor for the USG. Both
government and opposition parties value him highly as top
diplomat and legal expert. With his extroverted and
warmhearted personality, Winkler is popular throughout
the Austrian political class.
BROWN