Andrej Babis

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The Czech coalition government led by populist Prime Minister Andrej Babis has survived a no-confidence vote in Parliament over European Union subsidies that were paid to his former business empire.

The opposition requested the vote after a preliminary EU report concluded the subsidies amounted to a conflict of interest because he still formally controls the businesses.

Only 85 of the opposition lawmakers voted early morning Thursday at the end of an almost 19-hour debate to oust the Cabinet, well short of the 101 needed in the 200-seat lower house.

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Andrej Babis’ centrist ANO (YES) movement is in a minority government with the leftist Social Democrats with support from the Communist Party.

The opposition was boosted by recent massive street protests demanding the resignation of Babis.

Andrej Babis denies wrongdoing.

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