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UPDATE 2: Polish president, PM congratulate Czech Republic's Pavel on election win

28.01.2023 23:00
Poland’s president and prime minister have congratulated former NATO official Petr Pavel on winning the Czech Republic's presidential election.
Petr Pavel (right), with wife Eva Pavlova.
Petr Pavel (right), with wife Eva Pavlova.Photo: EPA/MARTIN DIVISEK

Pavel, a former army chief, on Saturday defeated ex-prime minister Andrej Babiš by a strong margin in the second round of the Czech presidential vote.

Polish President Andrzej Duda tweeted: "The presidential election in the neighbouring Czech Republic ended today. Gen. Petr Pavel has been elected the new president of the Czech Republic!"

He added: "Dear Mr. President, congratulations and greetings from Poland! We invite you to visit Warsaw!"

Petr Pavel prezydentem Czech. Andrzej Duda złożył gratulacje zwycięzcy i zaprosił do Polski Petr Pavel and Andrzej Duda. Photos: EPA/MARTIN DIVISEK; PAP/Radek Pietruszka

Polish presidential adviser Marcin Przydacz said Duda "held a phone conversation with the winner of the Czech presidential elections."

He added: "The atmosphere of the call was very good, friendly and stressed the best Polish-Czech neighbourly relations."

Przydacz, who is a foreign policy adviser to the Polish president, also said that Duda congratulated Pavel on his election victory and invited him to visit Poland.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki also tweeted congratulations to Pavel on Saturday, saying in a post that "the Polish-Czech partnership is the guarantor of our region's safety."

"Together we can achieve much," Morawiecki said in his tweet.

Premier Mateusz Morawiecki pochwalił decyzję o przekazaniu Leopardów i zaapelował, by "Zachód nie bał się pomagać Ukrainie" Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki. Photo: PAP/Tomasz Gzell

Pavel, a 61-year-old retired general running for office for the first timewon the presidency after a campaign featuring strong backing for NATO and the European Union and support for aid to Ukraine, the Reuters news agency reported.

Pavel won 58.32 percent of the vote in the runoffs, against 41.67 percent for Babiš, final results from all voting districts showed on Saturday.

Earlier this week, Pavel declared that he would travel to Poland for his second foreign trip as president, after a visit to neighbouring Slovakia.

Petr Pavel Petr Pavel. Photo: EPA/MARTIN DIVISEK


Source: IAR, PAP, Reuters, TVP Info

Click on the audio player above for a report by Radio Poland's Agnieszka Bielawska.