Czech Republic: Zeman leads but faces presidential run-off against Drahos

The Czech Republic’s incumbent president Milos Zeman took the lead in the first round of the presidential elections that took place on Saturday scoring 39 percent of the vote.

He will now meet his main rival, pro-European independent candidate Jiri Drahos, in the second round that will take place on January 26 – 27.

Speaking at a press conference in Prague after the announcement of the results, Zeman thanked his supporters asking them to “come with their friends, relatives, beloved and just anyone, who can vote…to come and take part in the second round of the elections.”

“I’m still young and full of strength and energy and I’m looking forward for debates,” said Zeman.

Drahos, 68, chemist and former head of the Czech Academy of Sciences, is running as an independent candidate.

Seventy three-year-old Zeman has become the most outspoken critic of the EU immigration policy during his years of presidency. He also has pushed for better ties with China and Russia, holding a stance against EU sanctions on Moscow.

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