Europe sighed in relief as the Austrian far-right candidate, Norbert Hofer, conceded electoral defeat on Sunday.
Herbert Hofer was the candidate of the far-right Freedom Party (FPÖ), an anti-immigrant, anti-Islamic, and Eurosceptic party demanding a referendum on EU membership.
Following Brexit, it was feared that the far-right leader would add to the political momentum of the anti-European right. Hofer wanted to organize a similar referendum on EU membership Austria if the process of EU integration accelerated.
The winner of this Sunday’s election is the left-leaning Alexander Van der Bellen won with 53,6% according to exit polls. That is the second time he wins. His earlier victory in May was annulled in Courts, due to concerns on irregular counting.
Europe is facing a calendar of successive electoral encounters this year, with the Netherlands going to the polls in March, France in May, and Germany in October 2017.