Lubomir Strougal, a Czech communist-era leader who served as prime minister for a record 18 years has died at the age of 98.
His death was confirmed by former Communist Party politician Jiri Dolejs on Monday.
Mr Strougal was appointed prime minister in 1970, when the country was ruled by a hard-line communist regime established following the 1968 Soviet-led invasion of the former Czechoslovakia.
Warsaw Pact troops invaded in August 1968 to crush political reforms and anti-communist protests during the era known as the Prague Spring.
Mr Strougal initially opposed the invasion but later joined the hard-liners.
After Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev introduced a reform programme known as ″perestroika,″ or restructuring, Mr Strougal was considered a pragmatic reformer.
But the hard-liners led by Milous Jakes prevailed, with Mr Strougal resigning from his post in 1988 – a year before the Velvet Revolution led by Vaclav Havel ended more than 41 years of communist rule.
Legal attempts after 1989 failed to hold Mr Strougal responsible for the communist-era persecution and the deaths of people killed at the former Czechoslovakia’s borders while trying to flee to the West.
Mr Strougal was a member of the Communist Party’s leadership for three decades and also served as agriculture minister and interior minister before becoming prime minister.
He retired from politics in 1989 and was expelled from the party a year later.