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Profile: Mirek Topolanek
Mirek Topolanek was a participant or observer in the following events:
Miroslav Kalousek is elected the new chairman of the Czech Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL), defeating the current chairman and foreign minister Cyril Svoboda in the second round of voting at the party’s conference in Ostrava. Kalousek obtained 164 votes, whereas Svoboda only got 131, but was then elected to one of the five deputy chairman positions. Shortly before the election, Mirek Topolanek, chairman of the center-right Civic Democratic Party (ODS), had indirectly supported Kalousek over Svoboda in a speech to the conference, whereas Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla of the Social Democrats (CSSD) had offered indirect support to Svoboda, the favourite before the election. Despite this assistance, Svoboda’s position was hampered by his unpopular support for the US-led invasion of Iraq, his pro-European orientation, and, in particular, the party’s poor performance in recent elections, which may be the deciding factor between the two candidates. [Novinky(.cz), 11/8/2003]
Czech President Vaclav Klaus appoints a new government of the Czech Republic. The incoming prime minister is Mirek Topolanek, of the right-leaning Civic Democratic Party (ODS). The government comprises a coalition of three parties, led by the ODS, but also including the center-right Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) and central Green Party (SZ). Besides Topolanek, the leading figures in the government include Jiri Cunek, chairman of the Christian Democrats and minister for local development, Miroslav Kalousek (KDU-CSL), who will be minister of finance, and Martin Bursik, chairman of the Green Party and minister of the environment. The government now has 30 days to win a vote of confidence in the Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of the Czech parliament. [Mlada fronta DNES, 1/9/2007]
European Union Leaders hold an emergency summit in Brussels, saying they are determined to avoid protectionist moves in response to the economic crisis that might cause a rift between nations in the East and West. The summit comes on the heels of French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s pledge to help his nation’s car industry, if jobs were safeguarded in France. Sarkozy’s pledge raised fears that national protectionism could scuttle hopes of a Eurozone recovery. Speaking after their meeting, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso says, “There was consensus on the need to avoid any unilateral protectionist measures.” German Chancellor Angela Merkel says that the newest EU member states that are former communist countries were not all in the same situation. Czech Republic Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek, the current EU president who also chairs the talks, condemns Sarkozy’s comments, saying: “We need a Europe without barriers but also a just and fair Europe. I think that it was perfectly clear that the European Union isn’t going to leave anybody in the lurch.” British Prime Minister Gordon Brown adds: “Today was the start of a European consensus on all these major issues that are facing the world community, including ‘no’ to protectionism. Bold global action, a global grand bargain, is not now just necessary, but it is vitally urgent.” President Sarkozy denies accusations of protectionism levied at his €6 billion (approximately $8 billion) bail-out plan to keep French carmakers manufacturing in France, but says that if the US defended its own industries, perhaps Europe should do the same. There is no announcement of a new EU aid package for the badly-hit economies of Central and Eastern Europe. The summit comes a week after the same EU leaders met to discuss reforming the EU’s financial system. Brown says the G20 talks next month represent an opportunity to agree on a new deal. “Only by working together will we deliver the EU and international recovery we need,” he says. This week, Brown will become the first European leader to hold talks with President Obama, who is also expected to visit Prague in April. [BBC, 3/1/2009]
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