Pro-European line is loss for all Czechs - ex-president Klaus


16.04.2014 14:53

Prague - Former Czech president Vaclav Klaus considers Prague´s current pro-European line his loss and a loss for the ten million Czech citizens, he said in an interview with CTK today.


Bývalý prezident Václav Klaus poskytl 16. dubna v Praze rozhovor ČTK u příležitosti 10. výročí vstupu České republiky do Evropské unie. ČTK Doležal Michal

Klaus said the fact that the current government of Bohuslav Sobotka (Social Democrats, CSSD) will not apply an opt-out from the Charter of Fundamental Rights is also a loss and added he did not have the strength to refuse to sign the Lisbon Treaty because he stood alone against it in all Europe.

"I definitely consider it a loss for myself, and even more for the ten million citizens of the Czech Republic. I consider it a huge irresponsibility of the current political leaders when they behave as they behave," Klaus said.

He was commenting on that Sobotka´s government and President Milos Zeman are pushing for the biggest possible integration of the Czech Republic in the European structures and their support for the adoption of the euro.

"I believe that history is not ending," Klaus said in hope that the Czech approach to the EU will be reversed. But he added he does not think that he will live to see this to happen.

Klaus is a strong opponent of the Lisbon Treaty that reforms the functioning of the EU and he was long refusing to sign the document.

He eventually conditioned his signature by that Prague will be given an opt-out from the EU Fundamental Rights Charter that is part of the treaty.

Klaus argued with the apprehension that the Sudeten Germans, transferred from then Czechoslovakia under Benes decrees after World War Two, would raise claims to the property that was confiscated from them, even though most legal experts ruled out this.

The opt-out was approved by the EU summit in the autumn of 2009. Sobotka´s government announced in February, shortly after it was appointed, that it will not apply the opt-out.

Klaus said today he "did not have sufficient support [in his opposition to the treaty] even in the Czech Republic where not even the governments, not to speak about other institutions, such as the Constitutional Court, were on my side," he said.

Klaus was president in 2003-13.

Klaus continues to disagree with the reform document. "The European Union has definitively ceased to be a Europe of states, it has become a Europe of provinces. I consider this a fundamental change," he said about the impacts of the substitute for the originally considered European constitution.

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