Gross to meet with the Communist Party leader to discuss support for new government

03-07-2004

The acting leader of the Social Democratic Party, Stanislav Gross, has said he aims to discuss support for a new government with all parliamentary factions, including the Communist Party. Following talks within the Social Democrat leadership on Saturday Mr Gross said he would address the head of the Communist Party, Mr Grebenicek, over the long weekend; Monday and Tuesday are Czech holidays.

34-year-old Mr Gross, who was asked on Friday by the president to begin talks, still says, however, he will give priority to forming a new government along outgoing coalition lines - with the exception of the Freedom Union not sitting in the cabinet but tacitly supporting a minority government from the opposition.

Talks are continuing; negotiations, however, will not be easy.

Already it is clear Mr Gross cannot expect support from the Czech Republic's largest opposition party, the Civic Democrats, following a statement by their party leader Miroslav Topolanek on Friday.