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Preface

The Czech Council on Foreign Relations (CCFR), founded in 1994, is a public, non-governmental association which creates an environment for joint reflection on the interconnectedness of our European and global existence.

The Council does not take partisan positions. Guests, members, participants in debates, and authors of the council's publications act for themselves. The Czech Council on Foreign Relations and its association guarantee notable participants from Czech and international political, economic, religious, and cultural spheres, whose names are themselves a guarantee of pluralism.

With the knowledge that live dialogue between people is irreplaceable, the council, above all, functions through the association of the RMV. Anyone can become a member by having their application accepted and by paying yearly dues. The association is for those who can meet regularly, exchange knowledge and ideas, as well as debate with other memers and guests. The meetings are lead by Czech and foreign politicians, diplomats, economists, artists, and other representatives from public life. The association allows people from different professions to take time to escape the weight of their own bussiness and compare their experiences and expertise with others in order to find that which is most important - continuity between professions and contextual awareness. The association is also an opportunity to establish relations between those who follow foreign policy and those who are involved in its creation. During these meetings, open debate is ensured through the application of Chatham House rules, which permits citing the views expressed during meetings, but prohibits the indefication of their speakers.

The Council also supports young people's interest in international relations. For example, in the past decade, the Council has organized Czech and Slovak students to simulate UN meetings, has organized for a group of American students to meet with representatives of Czech political life, and has developed international poster competitions for students of various art acdemies.

 Jiří Dienstbier, chairman of the CCFR (2005 - 2011)

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