A video showing the Czech President, Vaclav Klaus, admiring a jewel-encrusted pen at a news conference with the Chilean president before discreetly sticking it in his pocket has become a big hit.
Czech TV broadcast the video with red circles and arrows highlighting the pen. The video shows Mr Klaus picking up and looking at the pen, encrusted with semiprecious Chilean lapiz lazuli stones, as Chilean President Sebastian Pinera makes a welcoming address for the Czech leader.
Mr Klaus then takes the pen under the table and appears to put it in his pocket before doing up his jacket, closing the case on the table, and beaming like a Cheshire cat.
A spokesman for Mr Klaus said it was “a common pen with a logo of the state or office, which presidents and members of their delegation receive during state visits”.
Mr Klaus was quoted as saying it was “standard to take a pen from an event” and that “it was a ballpoint pen, rather than a fountain pen”.
A Facebook group has now appeared encouraging readers to send pens to his office on 2 May as the president obviously has nothing to write with.