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PRAGUE: The Upper House of the Czech parliament impeached outgoing President Vaclav Klaus for treason yesterday, a dramatic but largely symbolic act that nevertheless shows just how deeply the eurosceptic leader angered his left-wing opponents.
The decision by the Senate, dominated by the left, refers the president to the Constitutional Court which will rule on whether he violated the constitution by granting an amnesty to more than 6,000 prisoners serving short jail terms, as well as for other acts.
The Upper House voted 38 to 30 in a closed session to bring charges against the president.
The biggest punishment he faces, if found guilty, is losing office, his presidential pension and the right to stand again in future.
That is mild given Klaus’s second and final consecutive term runs out on Thursday.
But it would be a blow to the legacy of the right-wing economist who has proved self-conscious about his image, especially compared to the reverence enjoyed by his late predecessor Vaclav Havel.