Czech President appoints new Prime Minister from a glass box

Zeman tested positive for coronavirus earlier this week and is now recovering from a long stay in the hospital for people unrelated to Covid. Seriously sick at the presidential retreat in Lany, west of Prague.

Fiala, like everyone else at the ceremony, wore a gas mask as he signed the official document in front of Zeman, who was sitting inside a specially built box for the occasion.

Fiala, chairman of the centre-right party ODS, will lead the 5-party group of two won centre-right coalitions Congress voting last month.

Immediately after the results were announced, the two coalitions signed a memorandum of understanding to form a government to oust incumbent Prime Minister Andrej Babis.

Communists have now left the Czech parliament, more than three decades after the Velvet Revolution
The election was a disaster for the political left, with Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia (KSCM), the direct successor of the authoritarian Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, quit parliament for the first time in 76 years.

Just a day after the election, Zeman, 77, was rushed to the hospital, where he spent several weeks in intensive care for his liver and other serious health problems.

One of the president’s main constitutional roles is to choose the next prime minister to form a government, so Zeman’s hospitalization brought the country into a political deadlock.

Zeman was released from the hospital after 46 days on Thursday morning and was only brought back in the evening after testing positive for Covid-19.

Czech President Milos Zeman has appointed Petr Fiala as the country's new Prime Minister.

He was released again on Saturday, after showing no Covid symptoms, but with the requirement that he remain in isolation.

During the ceremony, Zeman and Fiala talk to each other using a microphone. Zeman said he will next meet privately with future Fiala cabinet members, adding that he wants to complete the process by December 13.

Until then, with a new government formed and a vote of confidence in the lower house of the Czech Parliament, Babis and his government remain in power.


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