Prague, Sept 9 (CTK) – Czech Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek and President Milos Zeman have found methods to settle mutual discords on foreign political affairs, Zaoralek, who turned 60 on September 6, has told CTK.
He voiced satisfaction with the willingness of the Presidential Office and also the government as well as opposition politicians to discuss serious problems linked to diplomacy.
This also applies to Zeman, with whom Zaoralek had discords in the past when some of Zeman’s statements differed from the Foreign Ministry’s positions on affairs such as the Ukrainian crisis.
“I am glad that I have the door open to Prague Castle [presidential seat] anytime a problem emerges…The president has made this clear to me,” Zaoralek said.
Based on their agreed-upon strategy, he and Zeman always meet to discuss ways to settle the problem of differing positions whenever it emerges, he said.
Sometimes they agree not to focus on the problem unnecessarily and try to avoid clashing in public. At other times they decide to discuss the issue and find a joint basic position, Zaoralek said.
The goal is simple: to achieve unity and prevent critics from saying that Czech foreign policy and positions are incomprehensible, Zaoralek said.
It is important that everybody recognise the coordinating role of the Foreign Ministry and that all make it clear that they are ready to discuss anything, he said.
Czech constitutional officials have held regular meetings at Prague Castle to discuss current affairs that threaten to provoke discords on the Czech scene, he said.
All over the world, there have been tendencies towards the polarisation of society. The trend must not become militant or hostile, so that it does not thwart even the functioning of constitutional bodies, Zaoralek said.
He said he and Zeman knew from the beginning that they have to cooperate. As an example he gave the blocked replacement of several ambassadors in 2014.
“We knew we must reach agreement. From the first moment, we have started to discuss issues and we have never clashed in a way to cause a deadlock…,” Zaoralek said.
The situation is similar Friday. “We still clash over various issues but we still go on. I think our system of communication is even smoother in a way than in the beginning. We have found methods to solve problems,” Zaoralek said.
He said he respects that Zeman, who was elected president directly by people in early 2013, has opinions of his own and cannot be persuaded to tell things how Zaoralek would like them to be told.
“Nevertheless, I can agree with him that in the case of issues that I find sensitive and serious he would adapt his reaction. We agree on the way how to comment on them,” Zaoralek said.
Zaoralek is a member of the centre-left coalition government appointed in early 2014.