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Talks on forming a new centre-right government of the Civic Democrats, TOP 09 and Public Affairs have run into complications. The latter party are saying if they cannot reach a coalition deal with the others, they could support a minority Civic Democrat-TOP 09 government. Public Affairs leader Radek John said this could happen if certain promises were secured, including a pledge to fight corruption. Civic Democrats leader and possible future prime minister Petr Necaš said, however, that he would prefer to see a standard coalition. He described Public Affairs’ statements as a tactical move.

The inexperienced Public Affairs got 11 percent in their first general elections, and would be the smallest party in a possible coalition with the Civic Democrats and TOP 09. Mr John on Tuesday denied that his party were demanding that Vít Bárta become interior minister. Mr Bárta is one of the party’s main financial backers and managed their election campaign. He has said he would quit his post in a security firm he co-owns before becoming an MP.

The Social Democrats came first in elections last weekend, but are unlikely to find coalition partners. The Civic Democrats came second, losing significant ground, in particular to TOP 09, another new party which gained 17 percent support. Mr Necaš has spoken of forming a cabinet of fiscal responsibility ready to reign in the country’s record budget deficit.

President Václav Klaus has not yet indicated whether he will follow the tradition of allowing the leader of the party that won the most votes the first shot at forming a cabinet.