Miloš Zeman, born 28 September 1944 in Kolín, is a former speaker of the chamber of deputies of the Czech parliament and former leader of CSSD. Zeman served as speaker from 1996 until 1998, and then Prime Minister from 1998 until 2002. He was a frequent rival of current president Václav Klaus who, after having defeated him in the 2002 Czech presidential election, ironically endorsed Zeman’s candidacy in the 2013 direct presidential elections.
He left CSSD on 21 March 2007 due to conflicts with Jiří Paroubek and, in October 2009, founded the Party of Civic Rights – Zemanovci (SPOZ). While denying allegations that it is financed by LUKoil, the party admits taking money from Russian-connected lobbyists. Chief among them is Miroslav Šlouf, Zeman’s right-hand man and former communist youth leader whose Slavia Consulting company brokered the LUKoil deal to supply Prague’s airport.
In reference to Islam, Zeman said “The enemy is the anti-civilization spreading from North Africa to Indonesia. Two billion people live in it”. A criminal complaint was filed for these comments in 2011.
Like Vaclav Klaus, Zeman believes that human actions probably cannot influence global warming.