The Czech Republic is sinking deeper into crisis just two months before it is due to take over the EU’s rotating presidency. Embattled prime minister Mirek Topolanek is considering stepping down following resounding defeats in both regional and senatorial elections. Notwithstanding calls from the opposition Social Democrats for him to resign, the main threat to Topolanek comes from within his own ranks.
One of the main topics of discord is the ratification of the Lisbon treaty, which the prime minister wants signed before the republic’s EU presidency starts in January. But his eurosceptic rivals are in no rush to ratify it or to adopt the single currency.
They are calling for an early election to be held next year, ahead of polls due in 2010. The crisis is raising concern among some analysts in Brussels, who fear a weakened leadership at a time of financial turmoil.