An annual summer school of Slavonic Studies got underway in the Moravian city of Olomouc on Saturday. Over 100 students from 23 countries around the world are attending the course, with the youngest a 16-year-old girl from China and the oldest an American man of 73. The summer school is being held at Olomouc’s Palacký University for the 31st time.
A woman was left seriously injured after she landed on the roof of a house near the Líně airfield in the Plzeň district during a solo parachute jump on Saturday morning. A police spokesperson said the woman, who is aged around 25, had suffered numerous injuries but was still conscious. She was apparently coming in to land on a grassy area before wind carried her onto the house in the village of Nová Ves.
Police in Brno are publicising good deeds by local people on their official website, Czech Television reported on Saturday. They began posting such stories two weeks ago and have been adding one a day in a bid to encourage Brno residents to take greater interest in their surroundings. Examples to date include the story of a man who prevented thieves from stealing expensive equipment from a doctor’s surgery and the saving of a squirrel from a car showroom. The police said they had found inspiration in the work of writer Jaroslav Foglar, whose books were intended to inspire young people to socially-minded behavior.
Top Czech judges have denounced judicial reforms in neighbouring Poland as an attack on the rule of law. In a statement published on Friday, the Czech constitutional and supreme courts, supreme state attorney and Ombudswoman said that they could not remain silent in the face of steps that undermined the values of European civilization, humanism and fundamental rights and freedoms. Polish lawmakers have approved a bill from the governing Law and Justice party under which all current judges will be forced into retirement and the president given powers to choose which ones to reinstate.
Veteran Civic Democrat politician Jaroslav Kubera has refused to confirm whether he will stand for president, despite the news this week that he had collected the necessary signatures from other senators to enter January’s election. In an interview with Lidovky.cz on Saturday, Mr. Kubera said his current activities a “probe” and could help provoke another candidature that he himself would support. Aged 70, Mr. Kubera is a former mayor of Teplice and is known as a strong advocate of smokers’ rights.
The four-day Colours of Ostrava music festival is drawing to an end, with UK artist Jamiroquai set to headline Saturday’s closing night. The Australian band Midnight Oil were the biggest draw on Friday, when they played their first ever show in the Czech Republic, while fans at the festival’s venue in Ostrava’s ex-industrial Vítkovice district have also got to see the likes of Norah Jones and Alt-J. This year’s has been the 15th edition of Colours of Ostrava, which is one of the biggest events of its kind in Central Europe.
The country’s diplomat tasked with boosting Czech innovation and research, Ludek Moravec, has told the Czech News Agency that while the Czech Republic does not lack quality infrastructure or excellent scientists, greater awareness of the country’s capabilities is needed. He made the statement a week before taking up his post in Washington. A number of memoranda cover Czech-US cooperation in scientific research; what was important, the diplomat stressed, was that existing opportunities be used to the fullest. Mr Moravec, who is 37, previously worked in the security, research and education department of the Interior Ministry.
David Davis, the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, will meet with Czech Foreign Minister Lubomír Zaorálek in Prague next Tuesday. The Brexit secretary will travel to the Czech capital after a second round of talks with the EU, the Czech Foreign Ministry confirmed. In a statement, it said that the Czech Republic supported a balanced deal based on rights equality, and stressed that it was important to uphold excellent mutual ties even after Great Britain’s departure from the EU.