Prague, June 19 (CTK) – The Prague branch of the Social Democratic Party (CSSD) officially rejected the return of former prime minister Jiri Paroubek to the party today, the branch’s spokesman Lukas Henzl told CTK.

None of the members of the CSSD Prague executive committee supported Paroubek’s return in the vote. Five members abstained from the vote and 12 were against, Henzl said.

Paroubek, 64, left the CSSD in 2011 and founded the National Socialists-21st Century Left (LEV 21). However, LEV 21 did not succeed in any election and Paroubek withdrew from politics in 2014.

He wanted to re-enter the CSSD, namely its branch in the small town of Cerhenice, central Bohemia. According to the CSSD rules, his possible renewed membership needs to be approved by the branch he had left, which is the Prague branch.

Paroubek entered the renewed CSSD after the fall of the communist regime in 1989. In the early 1990s, he became its central secretary and ran for the post of party leader against current President Milos Zeman in 1993, but failed. He was prime minister in 2005-06 and CSSD leader in 2006-2010. Immediately after the 2010 elections that the Social Democrats won only narrowly and ended up in the opposition, he left the post of party leader.

On Sunday, CSSD leading politicians opposed Paroubek’s return, saying somebody who had attacked the party should not be accepted into it again.

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