Czech President Miloš Zeman formally appointed Andrej Babiš as the country’s prime minister Wednesday, ending eight months of political deadlock since the billionaire businessman’s center-right ANO party won parliamentary elections.
However, with just 93 of 200 seats in the Chamber of Deputies, the minority government will have to count on the support of a communist party that has remained only in the shadows of national politics since their rule ended with the Velvet Revolution in 1989.
The centrist ANO (YES) movement led by Babiš won the election in October, but his minority government lost a confidence vote in January and had to resign. Other parties in Parliament have been reluctant to enter a coalition with ANO because of fraud charges Babiš faces.
His new government is a coalition with the Social Democrats that would have support from the far-left Communists in the mandatory confidence vote expected on July 11.
Both Zeman and Babiš are strong critics of the European Union’s migrant quota directive, with Babiš insisting that the EU should tackle migration by reinforcing its external borders and offering more aid to countries in the Middle East and Africa — where most of the refugees originate.