Czech president accepts government deal

April 14, 2005 at 10:55 AM

PRAGUE, Czech Republic, April 14 (UPI) -- Czech President Vaclav Klaus said Thursday he would accept a deal on a new government if it is ratified by the Social Democrat-led coalition.

"Its implementation will allow for a standard constitutional procedure -- the resignation of the entire government (and) my appointment of the new prime minister," Klaus said on Czech Radio.

The deal, which has not yet been ratified by the three governing parties, would see the formal resignation of Prime Minister Stanislav Gross. The most likely replacement, analysts say, is the country's ambassador to the European Union, Jan Kohout.

The new government would then need to be approved by a vote of confidence in Parliament.

Gross's position became more and more untenable in the past weeks due to a scandal involving the financing of his luxury apartment in Prague.

The Social Democratic Party's two partners in government -- the Freedom Union and the Christian Democrats -- had demanded Gross's replacement as prime minister as the price of their continued membership of the government.

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