Time for Communists to come in from the cold?
Sunday's historic elections to new regional parliaments produced two major surprises: disastrous results for the ruling Social Democrats and a major success for the largely unreformed Communist Party. The Communists pushed the Social Democrats into fourth place in almost all of the 13 regions contested on Sunday, and in one of them, Usti nad Labem, they came out on top. The results have created a rather tricky problem in the new regions; nobody wants to work with the Communist Party but the only alternative is for the other parties, left and right, to form rainbow coalitions to exclude them. But the other parties are themselves deeply divided. Earlier today Daniela Lazarova spoke to the journalist and commentator Tomas Pecina: