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Ireland and the Czech Republic continue to play European football

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After Dutch voters, the first in the EU to undertake a democratic exercise, the Irish and Czechs will vote on Thursday and Friday in an election marked by issues of economic insecurity, immigration and fears of Russian interference.

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Irish voters will elect 14 of their 705 members, while Czech voters will elect 21 members of their European Parliament.

Ireland's vote is dominated by the issue of immigration, which is exacerbating the EU's worst housing crisis. Ireland, already a popular destination, saw additional waves of migrants arrive after neighboring Britain adopted the scheme. Return of Asylum Seekers to Rwanda.

The key question, however, remains whether the centre-right is Fine Gael Prime Minister Simon Harris Local elections will also be held on the same day, with a larger result than Sinn Féin, the main opposition party.

“Vote Sinn Féin on Friday, it's the first step towards a change of government,” Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou MacDonald said in a message previously posted on Twitter by X.

To the east, Czechs showed widespread apathy in EU votes – the country recorded the lowest turnout in the last edition of 2019 at 28.72%.

ANO, the centrist opposition party of billionaire former prime minister Andrzej Babis, will win 23.1% of the vote, well ahead of government parties, according to Czech polling agency STEM.

Fears of Russian interference have reignited ahead of the vote after Czech authorities seized a website suspected of being a Kremlin front used to spread Russian propaganda. The inquiry is on the Voice of Europe website It has spread to Belgium, where the European Parliament is based, following allegations of payments to EU lawmakers through the site.

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Additional resources • Le Monte, DW

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