Pictures of Czech President Vaclav Klaus apparently pocketing a ceremonial pen on a visit to Chile are causing a sensation on the internet.
A now widely-viewed video shows Klaus admiring the pen during a news conference with Chilean President Sebastian Pinera, then holding it under the table where he appears to put it in his pocket.
Czech presidential spokesman Radim Ochvat said Klaus had a right to take the pen, which presidents and their delegations get on state visits.
“We at the Prague Castle always give such a pen to delegations, along with a notepad,” he said.
Klaus, 69, was quoted by the Novinky.cz news site as saying it was “standard to take a pen from an event,” stressing it was no golden pen but a ballpoint.