Czech Republic’s president Vaclav Klaus’s video showing him taking a ceremonial pen during a visit to Chile has gone viral. The president can be seen pocketing the pen discretely, making it look as if he is stealing it. Check the video to find why people from Czech Republic are feeling ashamed of their president –
Klaus claims that ceremonial pen is supposed to be taken as souvenir.
“Even though protocol allows Klaus to take the pen, with which the foreign minister signed a transport agreement, as a souvenir, Internet users are branding the Czech president as a thief,” daily Mlada Fronta Dnes wrote.
Presidential spokesman Radim Ochvat said Klaus had a right to take the pen, which presidents and their delegations get on state visits. “We at the Prague Castle always give such a pen to delegations, along with a notepad,” he said.Source: www.msnbc.msn.com
But the manner it was slipped into his pocket seems strange.
Klaus says it’s customary for leaders to keep pens after signing accords. But the manner in which he sized up the pen — encrusted with semiprecious Chilean stones — and then sneakily slipped it into his pocket while he sat at a desk alongside Chilean President Sebastian Pinera has seen him ridiculed by some of his countrymen.
The incidence has triggered a campaign to send the president pens, pencils and other writing stationary.
More than 5,000 Czechs have signed up to a Facebook campaign to mail pens to the president after a video of him sheepishly pocketing a pen he took an obvious liking to during an official signing ceremony last week in Chile became widely popular on the Internet.
“It seemed to me absolutely inappropriate to do anything like that during an official ceremony,” said Vojtech Palous, a 23-year-old student of medicine from Prague.
“To do that in front of television cameras was just insane.”
Campaign participants are being asked to send to the presidential office pens, pencils or other writing means on May 2 because “Mr. president obviously has nothing to write with.”
Palous said it is likely his family will send the president a parcel with a collection of pens.
“The campaign is great because so many people were able to say they disapprove with Klaus, and they can do it in a relatively funny way,” Palous said.Source: www.google.com
What was he thinking?