President Miloš Zeman is set to hold talks with representatives of ANO,
the Civic Democrats and the Czech Pirate Party, who came first, second and
third in last weekend’s general elections, at his Lány residence next
week. In the following fortnight the head of state plans to speak to
leaders of the other six parties that made it into the Chamber of Deputies.
Mr. Zeman’s spokesman said he would officially charge the leader of election winners ANO, Andrej Babiš, with forming a new government at their meeting on Tuesday. The president has said he would like to assist in the formation of a stable new government. He plans to convene the first meeting of the new lower house at the latest possible date, 30 days after the election.
ANO and various other parties that reached the five-percent threshold to get into Parliament have been holding a series of meetings on the composition of the new Chamber of Deputies and sounding one another out with regard to possible coalitions.
The Czech tennis player Karolína Plíšková has reached the semi-finals
at the season-ending WTA Finals in Singapore for the first time.
Plíšková easily overcame Garbine Muguruza of Spain 6-2 6-2 in
The Czech had previously swept past Venus Williams of the US in her first outing in Singapore and has now come first in the White Group. The prestigious WTA Finals brings together the top eight players in women’s tennis.
This year Plíšková became world number one for the first time and currently stands at third in the rankings.
The ANO party is entitled to the post of speaker of the lower house in view
of its resounding victory in the general elections, Andrej Babiš told
journalists following a meeting with representatives of the centre-right
Civic Democratic Party on Tuesday.
The Civic Democrats, who have said they are not interested into entering into a coalition with ANO, made an unsuccessful bid for the post of speaker of the lower house during the talks.
The head of the Civic Democrats Petr Fiala argued that in the interest of maintaining the system of checks and balances the post of speaker should go to the second strongest party on the Czech political scene.
Former German chancellor Gerhard Schröder, Czech speed-skater Martina Sablikova and singer Jaromir Nohavica are among the personalities who will be awarded state distinctions by President Miloš Zeman on Czechoslovak Independence Day, October 28th, the ctk news agency reported citing sources close to the president. The president will also award the country’ highest state distinction Order of the White Lion to the former mayor of Vienna Michael Häupl for his work in fostering good-neighbourly relations between the people of Prague and Vienna.
The leader of the ANO party Andrej Babiš has said his party would not field its own candidate in the presidential elections. Mr. Babiš said the presidential elections were not a priority since his party was too busy working to reach agreement on a new government. He did not say whom the party would support. Mr. Babiš has repeatedly rejected speculation that he had struck an agreement on mutual support with the incumbent president Miloš Zeman who is running for re-election.
Czech politicians have sharply rejected the idea that the country’s
public broadcasters –Czech Radio and Czech Television – should be
nationalized. The suggestion was made by the head of the Party of Freedom
and Direct Democracy Tomio Okamura in an interview for Czech Radio, when he
claimed that the financing of the two institutions was intransparent and
they should be under national supervision. He said his party was in favour
of scrapping license fees and making the public broadcasters entirely
dependent on state support.
Politicians from the ANO party, the Pirates party, the Christian Democrats, TOP 09 and the Mayors and Independents slammed the idea saying they would never support censorship or take any measure that would undermined the independence of the country’s public broadcasters.
The head of Czech Radio Rene Zavoral said Czech Radio regularly presents reports on spending to the lower house of Parliament and argued that nationalizing the public broadcaster would be in violation of the basic principles of democracy.
In its 2016 annual report the Czech Republic’s intelligence service BIS says it has registered heightened activity by Russian and Chinese agents in the country. The Czech Republic was targeted by campaigns aimed against the EU, NATO and the Ukraine, the report says. Meanwhile Chinese agents were focused on influencing public opinion with regard to Tibet and undermining Czech Taiwanese relations.
The leadership of the Christian Democratic Party, a member of the outgoing
coalition, has recommended that in the wake of its poor showing in the
elections, the party should go into the opposition.
A final decision on the matter is to be made at a national party conference on Friday. Party leader Pavel Bělobrádek has said he will publicly offer his resignation over the poor election result at the conference.
The party won 5.8 percent of the votes in the elections, losing four seats in the lower house.
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