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Kalousek not to defend TOP 09 chairmanship

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Prague, Oct 24 (CTK) – Miroslav Kalousek will not be defending the post of the Czech conservative TOP 09’s chairman at its November congress, he announced at a meeting of the party leadership on Tuesday in reaction to its poor results in the October 20-21 general election.

TOP 09 gained only 5.3 percent of the vote, compared to 12 percent in the previous election to the Chamber of Deputies four years ago. It entered the lower house mainly thanks to votes from Prague. It has lost 19 mandates and will have mere 7 MPs in the 200-seat lower house.

Kalousek, 56, co-founded TOP 09 in 2009 and was its first deputy chairman from November 2009. He became its leader at the congress in November 2015, replacing Karel Schwarzenberg.

In the past, Kalousek headed the Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) for almost three years. He resigned in 2006 after his plan of the Christian Democrats’ participation in a minority government with the Social Democrats (CSSD), supported by the Communists (KSCM), failed. He left the KDU-CSL in June 2009.

A long-term MP Kalousek worked at the Defence Ministry in the 1990s. In 2007-2009, he was finance minister in the government of Mirek Topolanek (ODS) government and he held the same post in the government of Petr Necas (ODS) in 2010-2013.

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