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Former Romanian tennis champion Nastase to be Czech consul

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Prague, Sept 22 (CTK) – Former Romanian tennis champion Ilie Nastase will take on the post of the Czech Republic’s honorary consul in Romania, Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek told journalists on Friday.

Nastase has been known for making unacceptable comments in tennis events. He was fined by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) for his behaviour and banned from attending its events this year until the end of 2018.

Nastase said he is honored by the fact that the Czech ambassador in Romania nominated him for the post.

Nastase said he has many friends among Czechs and that he is hoping to learn to speak Czech well one day.

However, Zaoralek said he was convinced that Nastase would behave differently in diplomacy than he did in tennis courts.

“It is very important for the Czech Republic to have in these posts such personalities that have a strong position in their country, and Mr. Nastase is one of the best known personalities, not only in the social domain. He was also active in politics,” Zaoralek said, referring to Nastase’s previous post of a Romanian senator.

Zaoralek said he discussed the issue with Nastase on Friday. He said he believed that he would represent the Czech interests well.

The role of a honorary consul does not involve diplomatic immunity, nor does it usually involve a salary.

Its main purpose is to promote the economic, business and cultural interests of the Czech Republic and develop the mutual relations in these areas, and last but not least, help Czech citizens, especially in emergency situations, the ministry writes on its website.

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