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Alexandr "Saša" Vondra ( ) (born 17 August 1961 in Praguemarker) was the foreign minister of the Czech Republicmarker from 4 September 2006 to 9 January 2007 and Senator for Litoměřicemarker district for the Civic Democratic Party (ODS) since autumn Czech Senate election, 2006. On January 9, 2007, during the new government reshuffle, he was appointed a deputy Prime Minister for European affairs.

He graduated in geography from Charles University in Prague in 1984, receiving a Doctor in Natural Sciences degree one year later. In the mid-1980s he was a dissident and Charter 77 signatory. After organizing a demonstration in January 1989, Vondra was imprisoned for two months. In November 1989, while the Velvet Revolution was underway, he co-founded the Civic Forum.

In 1990-1992, Vondra was foreign policy advisor to President Václav Havel. When Havel stepped down from his office during dissolution of Czechoslovakia and at the same time independent Czech foreign service began to be formed, Vondra became Czech Republic's First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs in August 1992, responsible i. a. for negotiating the division of Czechoslovak diplomacy. In 1996 he was a chief negotiator for the Czech-German Declaration on the Mutual Relations and their Future Development. In March 1997 Vondra left to become the Czech Ambassador to the United Statesmarker, staying there until July 2001. From March 2001 to January 2003, Vondra was the Czech Government Commissioner responsible for preparation of 2002 Prague summit of the NATOmarker. From January to July 2003 Vondra was a Deputy Foreign Minister.

He became paying ODS member only after his ministerial appointment and the victory in Senate elections in October 2006. He is generally perceived as pro-United Statesmarker and wary of European integration though less than ODS Euroskeptic hardliners and has good connections to Havel (his announced return to politics in spring 2006 was taken as a sign of ODS trying to appease the political centre) .

Vondra has been mentioned as the Czech Republic's possible nominee to serve as commissioner in the European Commission from late 2009 to 2014.

He is married and has 3 children.

References

  1. "Czech running mates?", European Voice, 24 September 2009[1]


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