PM says Czech Republic cannot halt all trade relations with Russia

The Czech Republic cannot halt trade relations with Russia over the crisis in Ukraine, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka told reporters on Monday – reaction to statements by two government ministers earlier who cast doubt Russian firms could win a tender on the completion of the Temelín nuclear power plant. Both Defence Minister Martin Stropnický and Jiří Dienstbier, the minister for human rights, stated they could not imagine Russian companies completing units at Temelín given Russian military intervention in Crimea. The prime minister stated later, however, that the government could not interfere in the tender in which the rules were transparent and laid out. Mr Sobotka said there were no "political criteria" which would allow the government to interfere.