Klaus warns extremists may take up issues that Civic Democrats abandon

In a letter to the convention, President Václav Klaus called upon the Civic Democrats and other right-wing parties to offer more topics for voters who would otherwise pay more attention to extremist groups. Mr Klaus, who is currently in Peru, wrote that he sees primary threats in the welfare state, rampant infringements on privacy, the emergence of new, left-wing parties focusing on environmental issues and constraints imposed by the EU. Should the party neglect these issues, he warned, people will vent their frustration through other, potentially extremist groups.

President Klaus founded the Civic Democratic Party in 1991. He resigned his membership and his seat as honorary chairman last year, saying he found it difficult to identify with the party’s centrist shift.