Press Conferences

8. 1. 2007 17:05

Press briefing of Prime Minister of the CR, Mirek Topolánek concerning current political situation, on Monday 8th January 2007

Martin Schmarcz, head of press unit: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the short press briefing of the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, Mr. Mirek Topolánek concerning current political situation, and now I give him the floor.

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: Good afternoon. I must say that I noticed with pleasure the news that the President decided to appoint the new government yesterday. I hope that it will finish, for the present at least, time of speculation and uncertainty. I want to tell you that the new government will immediately start to function tomorrow, after appointment of the President. Ministers will leave the Castle to attend the first meeting of the government; next meeting will be held as usual on next Wednesday. We will certainly not be waiting for the vote of confidence for 30 days; it will be shorter period, which will depend on the speed of those negotiations, which will be necessary. I would not like to prolong that relatively awkward administrative dispute regarding documents delivered to the Prague Castle; nevertheless, I can assure you that all the constitutional obligations were met in time and all the administrative materials were handed over in a standard way, and it was proved, after all. I thing that it will be good, before there will be time for your questions, to respond briefly to the interview of Václav Klaus for the Týden magazine. I am really not he, who would like to increase tension between the Prague Castle and the Straka´s Academy, between the government and the President; I am not going to respond to number of statements of in his interview. The only one thing I really must respond to, are words of the President about possible political corruption. I principally and flatly exclude any form of corruption in the course of gaining confidence for the new government. I have repeated many times that I will try to transparently gain confidence of leaders of the CSSD first, and in case of failure, confidence of the individual deputies. The general public will have necessary information. There will be no behind-the-scene negotiations, which we know from the past, whether it is near or distant past. In this sense I would like to present my apologies for words of the President. For me it is absolutely unacceptable to be connected with a party, the cooperation with which the President recommends, with a party that was not able to cope with corruption scandals in the past. It was not able to cope with them, let alone to solve them. As a matter of principle, I regard as better for the ODS, and not only for the ODS, to be joined with a party which is ideologically distant, nevertheless which is not afflicted with corruption, I mean the Green Party. I am of the opinion that it is better for further development in the Czech Republic and for the Czech politics and it will have better influence on the political culture than a connection with a party, which was not able to solve its problems. That was all as an introduction.

Martin Schmarcz, head of press unit: Ladies and gentlemen, now there is time for your questions. Does anybody raise his hand? Česká televize.

Alice Machálková, ČT: I have a question concerning Temelín. The ODS formed an alliance with the Green Party. Can you say what your vision is regarding the future of the nuclear energy?

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: The nuclear energy industry undoubtedly, as I stated yesterday, is a future of the European energy industry. Number of states gradually reappraises their attitudes. It is a long-term discussion; it has no direct connection with this government, with a mandate of this government, with these years. Certain lack of energy concerns us too; our energy requirements will be higher after 2012. It means that this government says that it will not start construction of new blocks of the nuclear power station Temelín, but on the other hand it declares clearly that it will be concerned with energy industry security, energy policy and it will be trying to develop long-term concepts, which would secure both the energy industry security and, of course all the energy and environmental aspects of the energy industry in the Czech Republic.

Martin Schmarcz, head of press unit: Further question, please.

Štěpánka Postorčáková, ČTK: The Chairman of the CSSD made obvious that he would not support your government. Do you have a plan how to persuade him?

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: I thing that I have been making obvious that I do not want to respond to any statements presented in media. Therefore, I am going to address Jiří Paroubek, I want to meet him and I will be debating this issue with him.

Martin Schmarcz, head of press unit: Further question, please.

Journalist, TV Prima: Prime Minister, you have ... inarticulate ... Mr. President ... regarding your political concept?

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: I suppose that I have already said everything concerning this issue in my introductory speech.

Journalist, TV Nova: I have one question. Now the 30-day term will start, during which decision will be made concerning your political career. What are your feelings? Do you believe that you will be successful?

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: My feelings are normal, I would say. I am of the opinion that a politician has his own responsibility; he should know when to leave. I do not have such feelings for the present.

Journalist, TV Nova: Does it mean that you believe the government to gain confidence?

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: Of course I do.

Martin Schmarcz, head of press unit: Hospodářské noviny, please.

Journalist, Hospodářské noviny: Could you in connection with this, I revert to your recent interview, add some details on possible convening of extraordinary congress of the ODS?

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: Owing to the fact that we have already communicated on this issue, I think and I admitted that it would be possible in case such situation occurs. There were number of conditionals in that sentence. I suppose that in case of failure of the concept, and there is no such situation, the ODS will have to decide whether to reappraise its own recommendation and its resolution from the last congress and to admit cooperation with social democracy on the exclusive basis, as it is being debated in certain spheres of the ODS. I do not suppose it will be like this, but this discussion is legitimate. However, I do not know whether it will be necessary to convene a congress or not. So it is not important whether those negotiations are done by Topolánek, or whether Topolánek is a Prime Minister. What is important is the attitude of the party and the attitude is unambiguous at present.

Martin Schmarcz, head of press unit: Further question, please. If there is not any, thank you.

Mirek Topolánek, Prime Minister of the CR: Have a nice day. Good-bye.

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