Prague, Feb 27 (CTK) – France has replaced its ambassador Charles Malinas to the Czech Republic, who held the post from last August, with Roland Galharague, who was appointed on February 10, according to the embassy’s Internet page.
Mondafrique server puts the change in connection with a scandal with the granting of French visas to the citizens of the Central African Republic, where Malinas was ambassador before he was moved to Prague.
According to the server, the French embassy issued hundreds of visas to Central Africans without checking them duly.
The case was uncovered a few months ago when the French anti-terrorism forces detained a group of radical Muslims, who arrived in France from the Central African Republic, the server writes.
It writes that the practice was covered up personally by Malians and that the French Foreign Ministry is investigating the case. It is not ruled out that Malinas sought personal enrichment. He had to leave Prague in December already, the server writes.
According to the Czech Foreign Ministry’s information, the embassy has officially been headed by charge d’affaires Marianne Carre, which means that Galharague probably has not yet handed his credentials to Czech President Milos Zeman.
Galharague was ambassador to Hungary in 2012-15. Before he held lower-level diplomatic posts at French diplomatic missions in Washington, London and Pretoria.
Malinas officially assumed the post last October, when he handed his credentials to Zeman.
During his term in Prague, he presented State Secretary for European Affairs Tomas Prouza and former prime minister Vladimir Spidla (both Social Democrats, CSSD) with the Order of the Legion of Honour, bestowed on them by French President Francois Hollande.