Heavy metal song behind EU-US ‘road to hell’ spat

March 27th, 2009 - 8:27 pm ICT by IANS  

Barack Obama Prague, March 27 (DPA) Mirek Topolanek, the Czech Republic’s premier, has conceded that his ill-timed remark suggesting that the US measures to battle the global economic crisis would lead to “a road to hell” were inspired by heavy metal band AC/DC.
Czech media reported Friday that Topolanek had told a television show that “AC/DC played in Prague last week. And their cult song ‘Highway to Hell’ may have prompted me to use ‘road to hell’.”

Topolanek’s comment, made during a speech to the European Parliament earlier this week, risks souring EU-US relations ahead of an April 2 Group of 20 meeting in London with US President Barack Obama.

Czech Vice-Premier for European Affairs Alexandr Vondra initially tried to mitigate the impact of Topolanek’s comments by claiming he had not heard them, despite sitting next to him in the European Parliament.

But he was later quoted by Czech daily Lidove Noviny as saying: “Yes, I lied. I tried to soften it.”

Topolanek was forced to resign as prime minister Thursday after his government lost a confidence vote in the country’s parliament.

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