Covid-positive Czech president swears in new PM from glass box

29 November 2021, 06:15

Milos Zeman formalised the appointment from a transparent box
Milos Zeman formalised the appointment from a transparent box. Picture: Alamy

By Daisy Stephens

The Czech president has sworn in the country's new prime minister from a glass box after testing positive for Covid-19.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Milos Zeman tested positive for coronavirus last week and must isolate.

He was separated from Petr Fiala, who won last month's parliamentary election, and officials by a cube of transparent panels during the ceremony at the presidential chateau in Lany, west of Prague.

Mr Zeman wished Mr Fiala "success".

The president was wheeled in by an individual in full PPE
The president was wheeled in by an individual in full PPE. Picture: Alamy

Mr Zeman, 77, was only discharged from the capital's military hospital on Saturday following more than a month's treatment for an unspecified illness and a couple of days of concern after he tested positive for Covid-19.

The ceremony had originally been due to take place on Friday.

Read more: Third UK Omicron case detected as compulsory face masks return

Read more: Omicron: Symptoms, cases, and what we know so far

He was rushed to hospital on October 10, a day after the election for the lower house of parliament, and was treated in an intensive care unit.

His condition was attributed to an unspecified chronic disease.

Attendees also maintained distance from one another
Attendees also maintained distance from one another. Picture: Alamy

Following the vote on October 8-9, a three-party, liberal-conservative coalition known as Together, comprised of the Civic Democratic Party, Christian Democrats and the Top 09 party, led with a 27.8 per cent share of the vote.

Together teamed up with a centre-left liberal coalition made up of the Pirate Party and Stan - a group of mayors and independent candidates - which came in third place with 15.6 per cent of the votes.

Read more: Wear face masks in school communal areas, pupils in year seven and above told

The new partnership will hold 108 seats in the 200-seat lower house of Parliament, relegating populist Prime Minister Andrej Babis and his centrist ANO (Yes) movement to the opposition.

The five parties in the future governing coalition have agreed on a power-sharing deal.

They are closer to the European Union than Eurosceptic Mr Babis.

Read more: Calais migrant meeting we banned Patel from "not anti-English" says France

Mr Fiala, 57, who has led the conservative Civic Democratic Party since 2014, is a professor of political sciences.

He previously served as education minister from 2012-13.

It was not immediately clear when Mr Zeman might appoint the Cabinet.

He said he will meet ministerial candidates between Monday and December 13 to discuss their future jobs.

Latest World News

See more Latest World News

Royal visit to Poland – Day Two

Poland’s ex-president Lech Walesa diagnosed with Covid

Abortion March for Life

Largest US abortion protest could be last under Roe

M&M’s packets

Mars gives M&M’s a makeover to promote inclusivity

A dose of the Pfizer vaccine is prepared

Booster shots needed against Omicron, new studies show

A soldier lights a torch from the eternal flame

Relocation of war memorial flame causes controversy in India

The town of Futaba in Japan

Former residents return to last town left deserted following Fukushima disaster

Rory Stewart has called on Europe to provide Ukraine with weapons

Europe must 'provide weapons to Ukraine' for defence against Russia, Rory Stewart warns

Matthew Wilson was found with a gunshot wound to the head.

British doctor killed after gun fired 'recklessly' by neighbour as he lay in bed in US

Antony Blinken, left, and Sergey Lavrov in Geneva

US and Russia try to lower temperature amid ‘critical moment’ in Ukraine crisis

People queue to receive a Covid vaccine in Kathmandu, Nepal

Tough restrictions imposed in Nepal amid record number of virus cases

Antony Blinken greets Sergey Lavrov

Top US and Russian diplomats hold talks on Ukraine amid ‘critical moment’

Lisala Folau in Tonga

Tonga’s ‘Aquaman’ describes swim to safety after tsunami swept him out to sea

People wearing protective masks in Tokyo

Japan widens virus restrictions as Omicron variant surges in cities

Czech folk singer Hana Horka has died, her son has confirmed.

Anti-vax Czech singer dies after deliberately contracting coronavirus

Naval exercise in the Indian Ocean

Iran, Russia and China begin joint naval exercise

Marine gear

Search on for humpback whale entangled in debris off Hawaii