President Zeman still hoping for visit by Uzbek counterpart

17-02-2014

President Miloš Zeman has said he would welcome a state visit by the President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov and would be happy to set a new date for it. The controversial Uzbek leader, was due to visit Prague this week, but requested that the state visit be postponed after Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka and other cabinet members refused to meet with him. Mr Karimov, who has been in power since 1991, has been criticized for widespread human rights abuse in his country. President Zeman said that while he did not approve of human rights violations, the visit would have provided the opportunity to sign business deals worth 15 billion crowns.