A joint meeting of members of the European Commission and the Czech Cabinet in the castle of the ancient city of Litomysl (in the east of the Czech Republic) on Friday at 13.00 began the Czech presidency in the European Union, Czech TV reported.

As Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala told reporters on Thursday, his country's EU presidency will take place in a very difficult period associated with military operations in Ukraine.

This topic will somehow dominate our actions as the EU presidency, along with another important topic - ensuring the energy security of the EU countries, in particular, the search for alternative oil and gas suppliers to our continent, Fiala noted.

The joint meeting of the EC members and the Czech Cabinet takes the form of a working lunch at the castle brewery in Litomysl. After about one hour, members of the upper and lower houses of the Czech Parliament should join the meeting. At the same time, talks will be held between EC President Ursula von der Leyen and Prime Minister Fiala, as well as EC members, with individual Czech ministers. Von der Leyen and Fiala will hold a press conference later.

After that, a cultural program will begin, which includes the opening of a photo vernissage and a classical music concert, which will begin with a performance of works by the outstanding Czech composer Bedrich Smetana. Litomysl is the birthplace of Smetana, and the summer music festival that bears his name takes place here every year.