Karel Schwarzenberg won’t run for TOP09 party leader re-election

Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Karel Schwarzenberg, announced Monday that he will not seek re-election as TOP09 party leader. The reason for his decision is reportedly his worsening health.

Karel Schwarzenberg | Photo courtesy of Karel Kreml

Karel Schwarzenberg | Photo courtesy of Karel Kreml

Schwarzenberg, who turns 78 this year in December, led TOP09 since June 2009 when the party was first founded. Recently he has been complaining about his hearing loss getting worse, which according to him, complicates his work.

But Schwarzenberg says that this doesn’t mean an end of his participation in politics. According to him, voters should expect to see him in the first place on party’s list of candidates for Chamber of Deputies election.

One of the favourites to succeed Schwarzenberg is a former Finance Minister and current First Deputy Chairman, Miroslav Kalousek. “He [Kalousek] was the undisputed economic and financial authority. But now he also expresses his opinion on other topics, and I must say, he does it very well. That is another reason I’m not needed here anymore, ” Schwarzenberg said.

The party is going to announce his replacement after an election held at annual party conference, which is set to take place in November.