Czech government surviving no-confidence vote

The Czech government won a tight no-confidence vote on Wednesday initiated by the left-wing opposition in protest of its fiscal reforms and plans to host part of a U.S. missile defence system.

Czech government surviving no-confidence vote
The motion from the opposition Social Democrats won only 98 votes in the 200-member lower house, short of the 101 needed to oust Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek's cabinet.

The result was expected. Topolanek's coalition controls just half of the 200 seats but it won support from two independents.

"We will have get used to the fact that this government has fragile support and that the opposition will keep testing it. There's nothing strange in that," Topolanek told reporters after the vote.

The Social Democrats say Topolanek's Christian Democrat-led government has pursued anti-social policies by pushing welfare changes, restrictions on sick pay and tax cuts for top earners as it tries to trim the country's public sector.

They also oppose a plan to host a U.S. radar base 90 km (55 miles) south of Prague which, along with 12 interceptor missiles destined for Poland, will comprise a shield Washington says will protect it and its allies against "rogue states".

Topolanek's coalition has faced internal clashes and legislative setbacks since taking power last year, but a March poll showed his party's support had risen to 32 percent, from 27 percent, compared with 36 percent for the Social Democrats.

The next election is due in 2010.

Reuters
Last Mod: 30 Nisan 2008, 14:42
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