Chief-of-Staff defends Czech Army from criticism

01-03-2001

Last week's visit to Prague by NATO Secretary General George Robertson brought both praise and criticism: praise for the bravery and professionalism of Czech soldiers serving in the Balkans; criticism for the slow pace of modernisation and plans to spend billions on up to three dozen new supersonic jet fighters, money which Lord Robertson said should not be spent to the detriment of the rest of the Czech armed forces. This week the Czech Army's Chief-of-Staff, General Jiri Sedivy, held a press conference at the Defence Ministry in Prague to answer those criticisms. Daniela Lazarova went along, and began by asking General Sedivy whether the Czech Air Force needed the new jets.