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Czech Parliament Vote: No Confidence in Prime Minister

The Parliament of the Czech Republic on Tuesday passed a vote of no confidence in Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek and his cabinet, the International Herald Tribune reported.

The lower house of the Parliament voted 101-96 against the government, the first time that the government has collapsed since the 1993 split from Czechoslovakia, Newsday.com reported.

The vote came in the middle of the Czech Repulic's six-month term in the rotating presidency of the European Union, and shortly before U.S. President Barack Obama is scheduled to visit Prague, Newsday.com reported.

Topolanek said he will resign, although he will not be required to do so by the Czech Constitution until the E.U. presidency has been fulfilled, the Tribune reported.

The E.U. executive said it is confident in the Czech Republic fulfilling its presidential term, Newsday.com reported.

It is now up to President Vaclav Klaus to appoint a new prime minister and cabinet that meet the approval of Parliament, Newsday.com reported. General elections are not required unless three attempts fail to form a government.

Former Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek said the government failed to handle the economic crisis, and suggested that nonpartisan experts take over in June and carry out early elections within the next several months, Newsday.com reported. The next elections are scheduled for 2010.