Far-right Austrian presidential candidate Norbert Hofer has walked back his previous idea for migrants to be accommodated on islands outside of mainland Europe.

In an interview with German magazine 'Stern', the presidential hopeful of the Austrian Freedom Party said he has turned against the proposal by Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz to house migrants on islands outside of Europe until their asylum applications have been processed.

Hofer said the idea went "too far" and said to it was "excessive, to put it diplomatically".

Kurz appeared puzzled by the change of heart, who had thought until recently he had copied the plan from the Freedom Party.

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