Cyril Svoboda

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Cyril Svoboda
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Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic
In office
15 July 2002 – 16 August 2006
Prime Minister Vladimír Špidla
Stanislav Gross
Jiří Paroubek
Preceded by Jan Kavan
Succeeded by Alexandr Vondra
Leader of KDU-ČSL
In office
30 May 2009 – 29 May 2010
Preceded by Jiří Čunek
Succeeded by Pavel Bělobrádek
Minister for Regional Development
In office
23 January 2009 – 8 May 2009
Prime Minister Mirek Topolánek
Preceded by Jiří Čunek
Succeeded by Rostislav Vondruška
Member of Parliament for Prague
In office
20 June 1998 – 3 June 2010
Personal details
Born (1956-11-25) November 25, 1956 (age 60)
Prague, Czechoslovakia
Political party KDU-ČSL
Religion Roman Catholicism

Cyril Svoboda (born November 25, 1956 in Prague) is a Czech politician, leader of the Christian and Democratic Union – Czechoslovak People's Party between 2001–2003 and 2009–2010 and a member of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic (1998–2010). During his political career he held several ministerial positions, most notably he was the Deputy Prime Minister (July 2002 – August 2004) and Minister of Foreign Affairs (July 2002–September 2006). He founded Diplomatic Academy in Prague in 2011 and is currently lecturing at several universities in Prague.


Early political career[edit]

After graduating from the Faculty of Law of the Charles University in Prague in 1980 Svoboda worked as an in-house lawyer of the state gas supplier Transgas and then as a notary public in Prague. He started his political career shortly after the Velvet Revolution in 1990 as an advisor for human rights and for the relations between the Czech government and the churches to the Deputy Prime Minister of the Czech and Slovak Federal Government.

Svodoba worked as an assistant at the Faculty of Law of the Charles University in while furthering his education at the Pan American Institute for International Studies (Notre Dame University) in 1991. He became an advisor to the Prime Minister of the Czech and Slovak Federal Government in the same year and then he became Deputy Chairman of the Government Legislative Council in 1992. He joined the Christian Democrats in 1995. In 1996 he started working at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as the Deputy Minister responsible for the Czech application to the EU, a process that he concluded as a Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2004.

Ministerial positions[edit]

Entering top level politics as the Minister of the Interior of the Czech Republic (2 January 1998 – 23 July 1998) in the Government led by Josef Tošovský Svodoba was also elected to the Chamber of Deputies of the Czech Parliament on 20 June 1998. He spent the next four years as the chairman of the Petitions Committee of the Chamber of Deputies.

Svodoba became leader of the Christian Democrats in 2001. After the Parliamentary election in June 2002 his party formed a coalition with the Social Democrats and he became the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs. He lost the leadership of his party to Miroslav Kalousek in 2003 and consequently the position of the Deputy Prime Minister a year later when the Prime Minister, Vladimír Špidla, resigned. However, he stayed as Minister of Foreign Affairs through all three governments in this four-year term. During this time he successfully finished the accession process of the Czech Republic to the European Union in April 2004.

When the Christian Democrats formed a coalition with the Civic Democratic Party and the Green Party in 2007 Svodoba became a minister without portfolio and Chairman of the Government Legislative Council. During the Government ‘rejuvenation’ in January 2009 he became Minister for Regional Development but the Chamber of Deputies passed a motion of no confidence a few months after the Government fell and was replaced by caretaker government led by Jan Fischer.

Retirement from politics[edit]

With the Christian Democrats splitting in 2009 and its fraction forming the TOP-09 party Svodoba became leader of the Christian Democrats again and led the party to the 2010 Parliamentary election. The weakened party did not gain any seats and he immediately resigned.

A year later Svoboda founded the Diplomatic Academy in Prague focused on improving both public and private administration. He also returned to teaching and is currently teaching at the Anglo-American University in Prague and at the CEVRO Institute.

Svoboda is currently a Member of the Board of Advisors of the Global Panel Foundation, a respected NGO that works behind the scenes in crisis areas around the world.[1]


He is married to Věnceslava Svobodová, a neurologist. They have four sons: Václav, Norbert and twins Radim and Vojtěch. Apart his five other siblings, he has a twin brother Josef, also politically active within the Christian Democratic Party.

Political roles[edit]



  1. ^ [1]

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Jan Kasal
Chairman of Christian Democrats
Succeeded by
Miroslav Kalousek
Political offices
Preceded by
Jiří Čunek
Chairman of Christian Democrats
Succeeded by
Pavel Bělobrádek