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Austria's Haider in Canada

BBC News Online, Wednesday 16 February 2000, 23:44 GMT

The controversial far-right Austrian leader, Joerg Haider, has tried to visit Montreal's Holocaust Centre during an unannounced visit to Canada.

The president of the Canadian Jewish Congress, Moshe Ronen, said the museum rejected what he described as a bizarre request.

Mr Haider arrived in Canada on an apparently private visit.

The Canadian foreign minister, Lloyd Axworthy, said there'd been no notification from Vienna.

He said no contacts were planned.

Canada is one of several countries which have downgraded relations with Austria after Mr Haider's Freedom Party, joined the Austrian government early this month. In the past, Mr Haider has expressed admiration for some Nazi policies.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service