Social Democrats withdraw candidate for lower house chairman


The Social Democrats have withdrawn the candidacy of MP Lubomir Zaoralek for the post of lower house chairman. As Mr. Zaoralek was the only nominee for the post, the election, originally scheduled for Friday, has been postponed until late next week. The Social Democrats say that they withdrew their candidate because they were not able to secure enough support for Mr. Zaoralek prior to the vote.

Meanwhile, the two largest Czech political parties, the Civic Democrats and the Social Democrats, continue to try and negotiate a way out of the parliamentary deadlock. The Social Democrats, who came second in last month's election, have agreed to meet next week with coalition partners the Civic Democrats, the Christian Democrats, and the Greens to discuss policy priorities. Talks on the formation of a new government have been going on for some six weeks, since a national election resulted in a perfect split in the lower house of the Czech Parliament.