published: 23.08.2013, 15:51 | updated: 23.08.2013 18:02:29
Prague - Martin Bursik, former head and current deputy chairman of the Czech Greens (SZ), is leaving the party after eight years, he told CTK in a press release today and explained the step by several unsuccessful protests against the party´s shift leftwards he made recently.
Another SZ presidium member Eva Tylova told CTK that she is also considering leaving the party and that she may work on a joint "project" with Bursik.
Bursik was environment minister twice and briefly headed the Education Ministry.
In the government of Mirek Topolanek he was also deputy prime minister (2007-09).
SZ chairman Ondrej Liska told CTK that the reasons with which Bursik justified his departure are but a veil with which to fulfill his personal political ambitions.
Liska said Bursik´s departure did not surprise him. He said Bursik´s partner, former lawmaker Katerina Jacques, has also left the SZ.
Bursik said the SZ is heading for a broad leftist front being built up by President Milos Zeman.
"I consider participation of the Greens in such a front betray of the fundamental values on which the party is based," Bursik wrote.
"I have been trying since the beginning of the year to persuade the party leadership to reassess the SZ shift towards the left because the party is rightfully considered an ally of the (leftist) Social Democrats (CSSD), Communists (KSCM) and the Party of Citizens´ Rights - the Zemanites (SPOZ)," he wrote.
Bursik also objects to that the SZ has repeatedly dismissed his draft resolution denouncing the CSSD-KSCM regional coalitions and refusing to participate in a government leaning on Communists.
"Being an anti-Communist, I cannot stay in a party through whose leadership it is not possible to push a clearly declared opposition to cooperation with Communists," Bursik wrote.
"The Greens are today a party on which no Zemanite coalition can lean. The party also says in its valid resolution that it will strive for such an arrangement after the early general election [to be held in end-October] that will not lean on the KSCM," Liska said.
Tylova said, however, there are a number of people in the SZ who share Bursik´s opinion.
"There is simply a certain ideological clash in the party," she told CTK and added that more members will leave the party who could found a new political grouping.
"Mr Bursik has asked me whether I would enter the project that is now being prepared," Tylova said, but would not elaborate.
He indicated he would like to continue to be active politically.
"I am going to continue working for the benefit of environmental and liberal issues, but on the basis of non-Communist democracy," he wrote.
Bursik entered politics in 1990 when he became a lawmaker for the Civic Forum (OF). At the end of the 1990s he was environment minister in Josef Tosovsky´s interim government and he held the same post in Topolanek´s government. He was SZ chairman from September 2005 until June 2009 when he resigned after the party´s failure in the European Parliament election. He ran for chairmanship last year again, but eventually only became second deputy chairman.
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