Muslims not welcome in Czech Republic, prime minister says

Czechs do not want a larger Muslim presence in the country, according to Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka.

"We have no strong Muslim community here, and to be honest, we do not want a strong Muslim community to become established here," he said in an interview with the Pravo newspaper on Tuesday.

The Czech Republic shared Germany's desire to stem the tide of refugees from the Middle East, he said, "but we have different views on how to achieve this."

The comments by Sobotka, who heads a three-party governing coalition, came two days before a visit to Prague by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

The Czech Republic, along with fellow Visegrad states Poland, Hungary and Slovakia, isagainst a permanent refugee quota system for European countries as advocated by Merkel. They believe it should be up to national governments to decide how many refugees to take in.

"The bottom line is that it is national governments which must guarantee the safety of their citizens," he said.

In depth coverage

Orban: Hungary to keep migrants away, premier says

Hungary will never again allow migrants to pass across its territory, nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orban said Friday.

Read more
Last update: Fri, 22/01/2016 - 12:09

Danish politician wants to bar asylum seekers from Muslim countries

A leading lawmaker in Denmark on Thursday called for the Scandinavian country to bar entry for asylum seekers from Muslim countries for up to six years, citing recent terrorist attacks in Europe.

Read more
Last update: Thu, 28/07/2016 - 14:12

The Germans who are fleeing Merkel's refugee policies - for Hungary

A growing number of Germans critical of Merkel's open-door refugee policies are seeking refuge in Hungary - a country that has built a razor-wire fence to keep out mostly Muslim migrants, citing the need to protect Europe's Christian civilization.

Read more
Last update: Fri, 12/08/2016 - 21:35

Only 25 women in Slovenia wear niqab, no threat to national security

"The question is whether 25 women pose a threat to Slovenia, as politicians say. Such initiatives are a cheap copy of a French law and similar solutions in some other European countries,"

Read more
Last update: Tue, 08/12/2015 - 12:32

Migration fears dominate debate as Slovakians head to the polls

Slovakia went to the polls Saturday, following a migration-focussed pre-election debate, which saw Prime Minister Robert Fico rally support on the back of claims that he will defend the country's security by keeping out asylum seekers.

Read more
Last update: Sat, 05/03/2016 - 10:46
Last update: Tue, 23/08/2016 - 19:53

More from Europe

Landmark EU trade deal with Canada to be signed on Sunday

The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with Canada is to be signed in Brussels Sunday, European...

Ex-Soviet republic Moldova to vote for president in time of crisis

Moldovans will vote for their president for the first time in 20 years on Sunday as the former Soviet republic...

Registration best way to prevent terrorists entering EU, says EPP official

The president of the European People's Party (EPP) Group in the European Committee of the Regions, Michael Schneider...

Northern Irish court dismisses first legal challenges to Brexit

A court in Northern Ireland on Friday dismissed the first legal challenges to Britain's plans to leave the European...

EU mulls next steps after Poland dismisses rule of law concerns

The European Commission was considering its next steps Friday after Poland issued a defiant response to concerns...