- Hans Weber
- June 5, 2023
Czechs select successor to Milos Zeman in president runoff
The Czech Republic is in the midst of a historic election, as voters head to the polls to choose a successor to outgoing President Milos Zeman. In the presidential runoff election, retired army General Petr Pavel and populist billionaire Andrej Babis have advanced as the two final candidates.
Pavel, a former chairman of NATO’s military committee, is viewed as the favorite according to polls. He is a political newcomer who has shown strong support for the country’s military and humanitarian efforts in Ukraine. On the other hand, Babis, a former prime minister and head of the centrist ANO movement, has been a controversial figure, known for his euroskeptic views and anti-migrant rhetoric.
While the Czech presidency is largely a ceremonial role, the outcome of this election will still have important implications for the country’s future. Zeman, the current president, was the first to be elected by popular vote and his second and final term will come to an end in March. The two previous presidents, Vaclav Havel and Vaclav Klaus, were both elected by lawmakers.
This election is a crucial moment for the Czech Republic, as voters determine the direction their country will take in the coming years. Whether it will be towards more stability and support for NATO initiatives, or a shift towards a more populist, nationalist ideology remains to be seen.
Article by Prague Forum
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