Police are investigating five people for the theft of weapons and
explosives from around the now defunct munitions storage site in Vrbětice
in the Zlín area. Two of the suspects have been charged with the criminal
possession of a weapon which carries a sentence of up to eight years behind
bars. The suspects are believed to have tried to sell some weapons to
others. The police have said the motive was primarily financial.
The Vrbětice munitions depot was partly destroyed by deadly explosions in the autumn of 2014 which claimed the lives of two employees. The area remained highly unstable and dangerous, requiring a perimeter watched by the police and the Czech military. Later, truckloads of surviving weapons and other material were eventually removed.
The hippo pavilion at Prague Zoo is to undergo renovation the director of
the zoo, Miroslav Bobek, has confirmed, and will cost at least 10 million
crowns. The bill is to be covered by the City of Prague. Renovation of the
pavilion will include changes to the filtration system; the water is
currently so clouded that the animals are hard to see when they swim.
The pavilion is relatively new (construction began in 2010) and was built at a cost of 173 million crowns but problems with the filtration system arose early on, requiring additional investments.
The country’s right-wing opposition, TOP 09 and the Civic Democrats, have
criticized the proposed state budget for 2018 with a planned deficit of 50
In a press released, TOP 09 leader Miroslav Kalousek called the current government “ineffective” while Civic Democrat MP Jan Skopeček called the planned deficit “evidence of the inability” of the government to “tap economic growth for the further stabilization of public finances”.
As was expected, the government postponed discussion of the planned budget on Monday morning and will return to the matter in two weeks.
The number of inhabitants in the Czech Republic rose by 9,200 in the first
half of the year to now stand at a total population of 10,588,063,
according to the Czech Statistical Office. One of the main factors in the
increase has been immigration, primarily from Ukraine and Slovakia.
New Ukrainian immigrants numbered 2,600, Slovaks 2,100, and Vietnamese 700.
Football goalkeeper Petr Čech has drawn differences between his current
club Arsenal and former club Chelsea under manager Jose Mourinho,
suggesting his former manager had a different philosophy when it came to
Čech told the French football website So Foot that Mourinho had wanted to always win at all costs and was not accepting of draws. He said that the approach by Arsene Wenger was not about victory at all costs but that the club wanted to win in “a certain way”. But he also said the situation was changing. Čech posted his first clean sheet of the season against Bournemouth at the weekend. The score was 3:0.
Arsenal had lost the previous two matches, including 4:0 against Liverpool.
The Czech Foreign Ministry has said that no Czechs are among victims of
Hurricane Irma which hit Florida and the Caribbean. The ministry was
responding to a query by the Czech News Agency; spokeswoman Irena
Valentová said neither the embassy nor any consulates in the US or Cuba
had registered any Czech nationals being in danger.
The Foreign Ministry has strongly recommended that Czechs not travel to stricken areas. According to the ministry, there are around 1,000 Czech nationals in the state of Florida – members of the expat community as well as tourists.
US President Donald J. Trump has declared a state of emergency in the state. Following landfall by the hurricane, millions of people were evacuated from their homes to safer areas; three people were reported killed in the hurricane.
Twenty-six people were evacuated from their homes in an apartment building in Prague 10 on Sunday night. Police, including pyrotechnics and other specialists were called by the family of a military items collector, worried about a device in his home being a possible landmine. On closer inspection, the item was revealed to be an alternator, but investigators found large amount of munitions and a radioactive item. Two other sites, in or near the town of Roztoky, were also searched. Police have not released additional details about the radioactive find.
Plans to revamp Prague’s Wenceslas Square have been given final approval
after 12 long years of debate, the news site idnes reported on Monday.
The project, by award winning Prague architect Jakub Cigler, envisages a traffic-free zone with more greenery, more space for pedestrians, a wider promenade and more outdoor seating arrangements.
The trams currently cutting through the square will be rerouted and car traffic will be severely restricted.
Work on the square is expected to start next year.
The parties of the ruling coalition have agreed on a 15 percent wage hike for teachers and a 10 percent wage hike for other public sector employees as of November 1. Agreement on the salary increase was reached after Finance Minister Ivan Pilny raised the projected revenues for 2018 by 21 billion crowns. This was made possible due to an upgrade of the country’s growth estimate from 2.9 to 3.1 percent. Even so, ministers will have to find an additional 8 billion crowns to deliver on their promise. The coalition parties on Monday did not reach a consensus on whether universities will receive the additional 4.5 billion they asked for.