New Minister of Defence
Norbert Darabos is Austria's new Minister of Defence and thus head of the Austrian Armed Forces. On Thursday he was inaugurated by Federal President Heinz Fischer. One day later, former Defence Minister Günther Platter handed over the department as the forces' military leaders welcomed Darabos in the Rossau Barracks of Vienna.
In his inaugural address, the new minister stated that he was emotionally gripped by the solemn character of this welcome. He continued that all members of the forces could rely on him, just as he will rely on them. In the rest of his speech, Darabos focused on Austria's role in the European Security and Defence Policy.
Norbert Darabos studied history and political science. He started his political career in the municipal council of Nikitsch, province of Burgenland. In 1998 he became managing director of Burgenland's Social Democrats. Since 2003 Darabos has been Secretary General of the Austrian Social Democratic Party. He is married and has two children.