Communists keep minority Gross government in power

01-04-2005

The Czech prime minister, Stanislav Gross, has survived a vote of no confidence called by the opposition Civic Democrats. Friday's vote came two days after his government lost their majority with the departure of the Christian Democrats from the coalition. The remaining parties, Mr Gross's Social Democrats and the Freedom Union, won less than half the votes, but survived thanks to the Communist Party, who abstained.

Civic Democrat leader Mirek Topolanek later slammed what he called a "red coalition" of the Social Democrats and Communists.

The no-confidence vote followed a period of instability in the coalition government, after Prime Minister Gross became embroiled in a scandal over his family's finances.