Zeman does not consider Merkel a friend

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Zeman is going to meet Merkel on Friday after a meeting with his counterpart Steinmeier, with whom he will mainly discuss economic relations. However, Zeman would also have a chance to practice himself in tougher topics like migration and a reform of the EU, to be ready for his later meeting with the Chancellor.

Zeman has been very critical towards Merkel lately for her approach to illegal migration. On the other hand, both Zeman and Schröder have been criticized for having an extraordinary relationship with Russian President Putin. They also share their views on sanctions against Russia, however only Schröder who serves as the supervisory board president of the Russian petroleum company Rosneft openly regards Putin as a friend.

The President’s office officials said that speculations about tensions between Zeman and Merkel are baseless. Merkel acknowledges successful politicians, that is why she respects Orbán as well, and Zeman has always been successful as a politician, said department chief Jindrák.

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