Sunday, April 5, 2015

Czech Pres. Blocks US Envoy from Prague Castle; Ambas. Aired Opposition to Pres. Visiting Russia

Czech President Milos Zeman has "closed the door" of Prague Castle to the U.S. ambassador following comments perceived as critical of the Czech's decision to attend a World War II commemoration in Moscow, the Reuters website reports today (April 5, 2015).

European Union (EU) leaders are boycotting the ceremony in May due to Russia's ongoing aggression in Ukraine, but Zeman -- who has often departed from the EU line -- has said he would attend.

"I can't imagine the Czech ambassador in Washington would give advice to the American president where to travel," Zeman told the Czech news media. "I won't let any ambassador have a say about my foreign travels. Ambassador [Andrew] Schapiro has the door to the castle closed."

Schapiro had told Czech television a few days ago that it would be "awkward" for Zeman to attend the World War II commemoration in Moscow, since all the other EU nations are boycotting it.

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