Tom Ridge and Ernst Strasser
Dr. Ernst Strasser, Austrian Federal Minister of the Interior, visited the U.S. for the forth time since in office. He intended to gain greater insight into America's most recent security measures, as well as to reinforce the concerted efforts made on the part of Austria in fighting terrorism, racism, anti-Semitism and xenophobia.
After touring the Chicago Emergency Center, Minister Strasser inspected the border crossing between the U.S. and Canada in Detroit/Windsor. During his two-day visit to Washington, D.C., he met with Attorney General John Ashcroft, Head of Homeland Security Tom Ridge and Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage.
Mr. Strasser opened an exhibition entitled, "Erinnern" (Remembrance) in the Austrian Embassy, commemorating the tragedy of the Austrian concentration camp, Mauthausen. In connection with Austria's fight against anti-Semitism, he held meetings with leading officials of Jewish organizations, such as B’nai B’rith, the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League in Washington and New York City. A final highlight was his participation at the Republican Convention, offering detailed insight into safety measures implemented at major U.S. political events.