Czech far-right unites in bid to enter mainstream politics

07-03-2001

Now, is the Czech far right trying to make a serious attempt to force its way into mainstream politics? Many had written off the far right as a significant political force in the Czech Republic.

After riding high in the mid-1990s, Miroslav Sladek's infamous Republican Party suffered a shock election defeat in the 1998 early elections. After losing all their seats - which in turn deprived them of state funding - the Republicans disintegrated in a mire of squabbles and criminal proceedings. But out of the ashes of Sladek's Republicans was born the Patriotic Republican Party, and on Saturday the party joined forces with several other extreme right groups to form a new alliance - the National Social Bloc. Earlier today spoke to political analyst Jiri Pehe and asked him to assess their chances.