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Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern addresses a news conference in Vienna, Austria, May 10, 2017. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger


VIENNA (Reuters) - Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern opposes a snap parliamentary election called for by conservative Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz and will seek to press ahead with a minority government if necessary, Kern said in an interview published on Friday.

Kurz is widely expected to take over the reins of his People's Party but has made such a move conditional on being given more powers than its current head, who is stepping down.

"We do not want a snap election. We will keep trying to achieve sensible solutions, including with variable majorities if necessary," Kern said in an interview with newspaper Die Presse

The newspaper also quoted a senior member of the government from Kern's Social Democratic Party as saying on Kern's behalf: "If he (Kurz) does not want to (carry on), he should step down immediately. We still have options."

(This story refiles to change source of second quote to a senior member of the government from Kern's Social Democratic Party, speaking on Kern's behalf, from Kern himself.)

(Reporting by Francois Murphy; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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