PM Jiri Paroubek: Communists no threat to democracy
Views expressed by politicians and participants of the gatherings in the streets of Prague on Thursday do not necessarily reflect the overall mood in Czech society. The Communist Party is the third strongest party in the Czech Republic, a cause for alarm for some. For his part, the Czech Prime Minister, Jiri Paroubek, has said the Communists are not a threat at all.
On the occasion of the 16th anniversary of the fall of communism, Jiri Paroubek took back a statement made years ago that the Communist Party should be banned, calling it his stupidest ever statement. He also posed the rhetorical question of whether the Communist Party represented a threat to democracy. Mr Paroubek's answer is that it does not. In his view it is in the best interest of the Czech Republic to integrate the Communists and give their voters a chance to participate in the prosperity of the country. That said, Mr Paroubek has repeatedly ruled out the possibility of a Social Democrat and Communist coalition government.
For many opponents of the former regime it is unacceptable that the Communists are still around but with a stable voter support they remain a force to be reckoned with.