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Man arrested for death threats against Austrian politicians

FILE - In this May 23, 2016 file photo Alexander Van der Bellen, who believed to have won theAustria's presidential election, speaks to press in Vienna, Austria. Members of Austria’s elite Cobra police commando unit have been assigned to protect the left-leaning candidate for Austria’s presidency in response to death threats from right-wing extremists. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak, file)
October 13, 2016 - 5:59 AM

VIENNA - Police say they have arrested a man who was suspected of tweeting death threats against Austria's chancellor and a left-leaning candidate for the country's presidency.

Police spokesman Johann Baumschlager said Thursday the 27-year old has confessed to the tweets. The man, whom police describe as psychologically unstable, was not named in conformity with Austrian anonymity laws.

Baumschlager spoke a day after extremist death threats prompted authorities to upgrade security for Alexander Van der Bellen, who is facing right-winger Norbert Hofer in Dec. 4 elections.

Chancellor Christian Kern is under permanent high-security protection, and Hofer also has police protection.

Police say the man has been charged with "uttering dangerous threats" and "incitement." Both crimes carry prison sentences on conviction.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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