Czech MPs to discuss US-Czech defense treaty, other issues this week

Same-sex marriage and an inquiry into Miloš Zeman's presidency are also on the agenda for the upcoming meeting of the Czech Chamber of Deputies. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 25.06.2023 09:45:00 (updated on 25.06.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

The Czech Chamber of Deputies will begin discussing the US-Czech defense treaty, which has been criticized by the opposition SPD party, at their meeting in Prague this week. A number of other high-profile issues are also on the agenda for the meeting between Czech MPs on Tuesday.

Deputies will also continue their debate on same-sex marriage, discuss an amendment to enshrine marriage as a union between a man and a woman, and consider establishing a parliamentary commission of inquiry into the actions of Prague Castle during former president Miloš Zeman's era.

MPs will also vote on the government's proposal to increase the consumption tax on diesel. Opposition amendments seek to maintain the current reduced rate on diesel, introduced to combat soaring fuel prices, until the end of the year.

The Chamber of Deputies is also awaiting a final vote on an amendment on driving that is primarily intended to simplify the points system for drivers and allow driving from the age of 17 under mentor supervision.

This amendment also includes the establishment of a driver's permit and the possibility of increasing the maximum speed on highways to 150 kilometers per hour.

The Chamber of Deputies will also debate raising the minimum health insurance coverage limit for foreigners with long-term residency. An ANO proposal seeks to reject the amendment, while an alternative amendment suggests offering this insurance through subsidiaries of any health insurance company.

The defense treaty with the US, approved by the Czech government in April, covers various areas related to United States soldiers' potential presence in the Czech Republic. The agreement has raised concerns about the stay of American soldiers and the construction of embassy-like buildings without Czech access.

However, government officials clarify that the agreement does not pertain to soldier stays or base establishment.

The proposed investigative commission into the Miloš Zeman era wold examine presidential powers in national security and foreign relations from 2013 to 2023. A commission, comprising representatives from each parliamentary club, would present its findings within ten months.

Deputies will revisit their discussion on legalizing same-sex marriage for the fourth time. The draft amendment will face a proposal to reject it by the SPD party and an attempt to send it back for revision by ODS.

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