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Diplomatic row looms between Canada and Czech Republic

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Diplomatic row looms between Canada and Czech Republic

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The Czech Republic is talking of diplomatic reprisals after Canada reintroduced visas for its citizens.

Prague plans to recall its ambassador from Ottawa and is asking for support from fellow EU members to have the decision reversed. “There were two reasons why we introduced the visas. The first and the most important was the number of refugee claimants that we’ve received from the Czech Republic in Canada. It caused a serious demand on our social security system in Canada, on social housing and tax payers.” said Canadian Ambassador Michael Calcott. Officials say most of the Czech asylum claimants are from the Roma minority, fleeing what they say is persecution at home. Prague says it will have talks with the European Commission, which should propose a plan of action within three months. In the meantime, it plans to introduce visas for Canadian diplomats and civil servants.