The Social Democratic Party’s unsuccessful candidate for foreign minister
Miroslav Poche will leave his post at the foreign ministry as soon as a new
foreign minister has been appointed, the party’s new nominee for the
post, Deputy Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček told journalists on
The announcement came following a meeting with Prime Minister Andrej Babiš who is to discuss Petříček’s nomination with President Zeman later today.
Poche, whom the president refused to appoint foreign minister on the grounds of his pro-migrant views, has been serving in the post of political secretary at the ministry and chief aide to acting foreign minister, Jan Hamáček.
President Zeman has already signaled that he considers the party’s new nominee for the post of foreign minister acceptable.
The Czech Republic will open an embassy in Mali as of January 1, 2019, the
Czech Foreign Ministry announced on its web page citing a decision by the
The embassy in Bamako should play a key role in strengthening cooperation in the field of security, increasing the Czech presence in military and civilian missions aimed at stabilizing the Sahel region and contribute to the development of mutual economic cooperation.
In his address to the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly,
acting Czech foreign minister, Jan Hamáček, spoke about the need for
greater international cooperation in defending the universal ideals and
values the UN was founded on.
History teaches us that respect for human rights is the best remedy for conflict and violence, Hamáček said,adding that the historical experience of his own country provided many examples of this.
Hamáček mentioned the 50th anniversary of the 1968 Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia saying the lessons of the past are still relevant today since clearly not all countries, including those situated in Eastern Europe, have the right to choose their foreign policy orientation without a threat to their sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The acting Czech foreign minister pointed to the annexation of Crimea which he said represented a blatant violation of international law.
The founder and first president of Czechoslovakia, Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, once said that states are sustained only by those ideals from which they were born. The same must be true about the United Nations.
The UN was founded for the protection of peace, human rights, justice and social progress and all member states should embrace those ideals, Hamáček concluded.
Czech-German business cooperation, European issues and the possible impacts
of the trade war between the US and China topped the agenda of President
Zeman’s talks with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and
Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday.
The German president said that as neighbours and EU members the Czech Republic and Germany were closer than ever and had a joint responsibility in helping to overcome the drawn-out European crisis and preventing another division of Europe into East and West.
During talks with Angela Merkel President Zeman praised Czech-German business ties, but criticized US protectionist measures, saying a trade war would benefit no one and could spark a new global crisis. He was also critical of the sanctions against Iran, saying Czech firms were interested in doing business with the country.
President Zeman said the talks with German officials had been friendly and constructive and migration issues had only been discussed marginally.
Observers noted that for the first time Czech-German top-level talks dealt exclusively with present-day issues and did not dwell on the past.
The Czech Foreign Ministry is hosting an international symposium on Czech
foreign policy titled “Rethinking the Future.“
The event is co-organized by the Prague-based Institute of International Relations, the German foundation Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung and the embassies of the United States and Australia.
In an opening address to the assembly, Deputy Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček stressed the significance of EU and NATO membership for the Czech Republic.
He said politicians must work to overcome their differences on divisive issues such as migration and relations with Russia and that Czech foreign policy must build on values such as support for human rights in countries where they are brutally suppressed.
Petříček also stressed the importance of developing transatlantic cooperation, saying the United States had always been Europe’s key partner in times when the continent faced serious challenges.
The Social Democrats, the junior party in the ruling coalition, have moved to resolve a months-long dispute with President Zeman over who should hold the foreign ministry portfolio. Party leader Jan Hamáček on Tuesday revealed the name of the party’s new nominee for the post – the present deputy foreign minister, Tomáš Petříček.
The Social Democrats are to nominate Tomáš Petříček for the post of
foreign minister, Czech Television reported. The junior party in the
coalition government had previously put forward Miroslav Poche for the
position but President Miloš Zeman refused to appoint him.
The head of the Social Democrats, Minister of the Interior Jan Hamáček, is currently serving as the country’s diplomatic chief in a caretaker capacity. Mr. Petříček is at present deputy minister of foreign affairs.
Czech President Milos Zeman is to pay an official three-day visit to
Germany next week. Mr. Zeman will arrive in Berlin on Wednesday afternoon
but his talks with the country’s leaders are scheduled for Friday.
He will be received with military honours by his German counterpart President Frank Walter Steinmeier on Friday morning and then meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday afternoon. The talks are expected to focus on a wide range of issues including bilateral cooperation, EU reform, the migrant crisis or relations with Russia.
The president will also meet with representatives of German companies doing business in the Czech Republic.
Indian President, Ram Nath Kovind, is meeting with both the Czech President and Prime Minister this Thursday. Representatives of over 50 Indian enterprises are arriving alongside Kovind to take part in a specially organised forum with their Czech counterparts, focused on deepening trade and business ties. Collaboration in research and development is also to be discussed.
The distribution of refugees remains to be the only problematic issue in
the otherwise excellent Czech-German relations, German chancellor Angela
Merkel said on Wednesday after meeting with Czech Prime Minister Andrej
Babiš in Berlin. Several dozen people gathered outside the German
Chancellery in the German capital to protest against Mr. Babiš.
The ANO party leader, who arrived in Berlin for his first official visit of Germany, is also set scheduled to meet with Bundestag president Wolfgang Schäuble. Earlier on Wednesday, he held talks with representatives of several local think tanks and laid a wreath at the Berlin Wall Memorial.
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