Credit: KK/BD

Few EU Citizens Take Up The Option To Vote in Czech EU Parliament Elections

Citizens of other EU countries who live in the Czech Republic can vote for Czech MEPs in the EU elections if they have registered on the electoral roll before 30 April. However, most of these foreigners, whose number is around 230,000 according to the Interior Ministry, have not used this option, CTK has found out.

For example, in the central district of Brno, only 49 of the 17,000 foreign inhabitants did so, while 26 did so in Olomouc, the Czech Republic’s sixth biggest town.

Voters from other EU countries can vote in the Czech EU elections if they have had permanent or temporary residence in the Czech Republic since 24 April at least, and have been entered into the list of voters by the municipal authority. They had to apply no later than 28 April if they had not been on the list since the last Euro elections in 2019. They also had to sign an affidavit stating that they would vote only in the Czech Republic, said Michal Stastny, spokesman for Brno-stred district town hall. Violation of this rule carries a fine of up to CZK 10,000.

Pavel Litavec, representative of the town hall of Brno’s northern district, which has the second highest number of foreigners (almost 8,000), said that 41 of them have registered for this year’s European elections, of whom 19 applied for registration for the first time this year.

With the exception of Slovaks, the main groups of foreigners in Brno are nationalities who cannot vote in the EU elections: Ukrainians, Vietnamese and Russians.

Olomouc City Hall has registered 26 EU citizens who have expressed their will to vote in the European Parliament elections in the town, its spokeswoman Radka Stedra told CTK.

According to the Interior Ministry’s quarterly report on migration, a total of 1.03 million foreigners were registered in the Czech Republic at the end of March, 338,500 of them with temporary residence permits and 355,005 with permanent residence permits. A further 338,736 foreigners were living in the Czech Republic on the basis of temporary protection registration, mainly Ukrainians who fled the Russian invasion. In total, there were 800,000 foreigners from non-EU countries living legally in the Czech Republic who are not able to vote for the European Parliament.

Of citizens of EU countries, the highest number are Slovaks (around 120,000). Romanians were the second largest community (approx. 21,000). Bulgarians and Poles numbered around 18,000 each, Germans 13,000, and Hungarians 11,300.

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