New Czech Government to Make Decision on Building Ties With Russia

russia czech relations

The relations would be built on the basis of mutual respect and would be pragmatic if possible, Jakub Kulhanek noted.

The decision on how to develop relations with Russia should be made by the Czech Republic’s government, which will be established after the October elections to the lower house of parliament, the Chamber of Deputies, Foreign Minister Jakub Kulhanek said on Sunday.

“I don’t think that it is possible to allow an idea that we won’t have relations with Russia,” Kulhanek told the Czech News Agency.

“The relations would be built on the basis of mutual respect and would be pragmatic if possible. A decision on how they will be built, in my view, is up to the future government [of the Czech Republic, which will be set up after the parliamentary polls]. It should say how to build our relations,” he said.

According to the Czech side, one of conditions for launching dialogue between Prague and Moscow is removing the Czech Republic from the Russian list of unfriendly states, where it was included along with the US. Kulhanek says this decision runs counter to the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

On April 22, the two sides agreed that their diplomatic representations would be brought to strict parity, with each mission comprising seven diplomats and 25 technical employees.

The Russian government on May 14 officially declared the Czech Republic and the United States to be “unfriendly” states.

The diplomatic row began in April, when the Czech government accused Russian intelligence agents of carrying out two explosions at a military arms depot in the eastern part of the Czech Republic in October 2014.

Two Czech citizens were killed in those explosions, which Prague says were aimed at destroying munitions that had been sold to Ukraine.


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