Austrian Mint celebrates 60th anniversary of the Austrian Federal Army

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May 7, 2015 – On May 6, 2015 the Austrian Mint issued a silver coin in honour of the 60th anniversary of the Austrian Federal Army. The modern Austrian army was formed in 1955 when the occupation of Austria ended with the signing of the Austrian State Treaty, declaring Austria a neutral and peaceful country for all time.

Austria / 2015 / 5 euro / Silver Ag 800 / 28.50 mm / 10 g / Design: Helmut Andexlinger (obverse) and Herbert Waehner (reverse) / Mintage: 50,000.

The reverse of the silver coin depicts a rescue operation during a peacekeeping mission. The Blackhawk helicopter, key to such undertakings, is hovering in place while army personnel bring in a rescued person. A military member is depicted in the foreground wearing the Austrian beret with the army crest. This side of the coin also bears the words “60 Jahre Bundesheer” (Austrian Federal Army), the anniversary dates 1955 2015, and the words “Schutz und Hilfe” literally meaning protection and help, in other words search and rescue. The reverse of the coin was designed and engraved by mint engraver Herbert Waehner.

The obverse of the nine-sided coin is the standard 5-euro design, with the denomination encircled by the shields of the nine federal provinces of Austria. In the center is the face value of 5 euros. Mint engraver Helmut Andexlinger designed the obverse.

Signed on 15 May 1955, the Austria State Treaty brought an end to the occupation of the country in the aftermath of the Second World War, and re-established Austria as an independent and democratic sovereign state. The treaty also paved the way for the foundation of the Austrian Federal Army (Bundesheer) later the same year. In addition to their duty to defend Austrian territory, the Austrian Armed Forces plays a vital role in international peacekeeping and humanitarian relief missions, providing invaluable assistance in cases of natural disaster.

Austrian Guard Battalion at a parade in Paris. Source: Wikipedia.

The Austrian Federal Army is forever indebted to the USA for the remainder military material; vehicles, munitions, even uniforms left behind by in Austria when the USA withdrew in the 1950’s. These “leftovers” are what Austria used to establish the modern Austrian army. During the postwar decade Austria had very little, and communism was creeping closer to its now neutral territory. The Austrians used the leftover equipment and uniforms to establish its army and hold communism at the eastern front.

Gerald Klug and Gerhard Starsich present the new 5 euro coin.

The 5 euro silver coin has a diameter of 28.5 mm, contains 8 grams of fine silver and has a fineness of 800. The silver coin is available in special uncirculated quality and will have a maximum mintage of 50,000. Each of these coins is vacuum-sealed in a colorful and informative blister pack.

To visit the website of the Austrian Mint please click here.

More detailed information on the Austria State Treaty provides the archive of the U.S. Department of State.

And here you may get to the official website of the Austrian Federal Army.