News Czech PM says higher level of sanctions against Russia unlikely at this stage

20-03-2014 16:29 | Daniela Lazarová

Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka says the EU is unlikely to go beyond the framework of targeted sanctions against Russian officials in response to the country’s aggression in Ukraine. Arriving at a two-day summit of EU leaders in Brussels on Thursday, Mr. Sobotka said he did not expect the alliance to reach agreement on a higher level of sanctions, be it economic sanctions or an arms embargo which some EU members have been pushing for. The Czech prime minister said he himself did not consider the time to be ripe for an arms embargo. The strength of the EU’s response to developments in Ukraine have divided the alliance with some urging strong measures while others advocating a more prudent policy.

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Czech Republic to have ambassador to Cuba after 27 years

24-08-2016 13:15 | Ruth Fraňková

Vladimír Eisenbruk will be appointed a Czech ambassador to Cuba, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed on Wednesday. Mr Eisenbruk, who previously served as an ambassador in Costa Rica, Mexico and Peru, will be the first Czech ambassador to the country after 27 years. Until now, both the Czech Republic and Cuba have been represented in the other country by a charge d'affaires. According to the foreign ministry’s spokeswoman Irena Valentová, Cuba’s agreement shows a shift in the countries’ mutual dialogue as well as new dynamics in the bilateral relations. 

Czech plane forced to make emergency landing in Lyon

24-08-2016 12:10 | Ruth Fraňková

A Czech plane with over 150 people on board was forced to make an emergency landing at an airport in Lyon, France on Tuesday night over a suspected fuel leak. The plane, operated by the Czech charter company Travel Service, was on its way from Malaga in Spain to Prague. According to the company’s spokeswoman, the safety of the passengers and crew was not in danger. The company has already dispatched a replacement plane to pick up the stranded passengers. 

Czech hockey player Hudler reportedly signs one-year deal with Dallas

24-08-2016 12:09 | Ruth Fraňková

Czech hockey player Jiří Hudler has reportedly signed a one year deal with the Dallas Stars, the hockey news site Today’s Slapshot reported on Wednesday, adding that the deal is worth $2 million. The 32-year-old forward finished last season with 10 goals and 35 points in an abbreviated 53-game season with Calgary and 6 goals and 11 points with Florida following the trade deadline. 

Over 100 child deaths in 2015 due to serious injuries

24-08-2016 08:09 | Ian Willoughby

Some 109 children in the Czech Republic died as a result of injuries in 2015, while 330,000 children had injuries examined by doctors, according to the minister of health, Svatopluk Němeček. In 2010,168 children died from injuries. Traffic accidents were the major cause of death among children and the number of serious injuries on trampolines increased on previous years. 

Plzeň fail to reach Champions League after home draw with Ludogorets

24-08-2016 07:18 | Ian Willoughby

Czech league title-holders Viktoria Plzeň have failed to reach the Champions League, Europe’s top club competition. The West Bohemians drew 2:2 at home with Ludogorets Razgrad on Tuesday night but went out on aggregate after losing the first leg in Bulgaria 2:0 last week. Plzeň played in the lucrative Champions League in 2011 and 2013. This term they will take part in the second-tier Europa League. 

Schwarzenberg: Prague Castle now more closed than under Husák

23-08-2016 18:47 | Ian Willoughby

Responding to the introduction of airport-style metal detectors at Prague Castle on Tuesday, the honorary head of TOP 09, Karel Schwarzenberg, said that the institution was more closed today than it was under Gustav Husák, the last Communist president of Czechoslovakia. Mr. Schwarzenberg, who was chancellor to President Václav Havel and was defeated in the last presidential election by Miloš Zeman, said he recalled the joy with which Mr. Havel had opened Prague Castle to the public in the 1990s. He made the comments at an event launching the policy programme of TOP 09 ahead of regional and Senate elections later this year. 

Voter support for most popular party ANO up slightly, suggests poll

23-08-2016 16:53 | Ian Willoughby

Voter support for ANO has grown by just over 1 percent to 23.9 percent, suggests an opinion poll conducted in August by the SANEP polling agency. The survey indicated that government leaders the Social Democrats would get 19.1 percent back if an election were held this month, a decline of slightly over 2 percent on the figure for the same poll in July. The Communists came third with 13.4 percent, followed by the Civic Democrats on 11.2 percent and TOP 09 on 6.1 percent. 

Airport-style metal detectors installed at Prague Castle

23-08-2016 16:12 | Ian Willoughby

Airport-style walk-through metal detectors have been installed at Prague Castle. Some weeks after security checks at the popular tourist site were stepped up, two such metal detectors were installed on Tuesday at the entrance to the castle’s First Courtyard from the main square. There is no other way into that part of the complex and queues have grown longer at Prague Castle, Czech Television reported. President Miloš Zeman says he believes his residence is a potential terrorist target. Tour operators say the checks have led to very long lines of visitors. 

Krpálek now most in-demand Czech sportsman, says agency boss

23-08-2016 13:45 | Ian Willoughby

Following his triumph at the Olympics, Lukáš Krpálek is now the most sought after and popular figure in Czech sport, says Miroslav Černošek, the head of the agency, Česká sportovní, that represents the judo star. Mr. Černošek told the Czech News Agency that Krpálek’s success put him on a par with Roman Šeberle when he became Olympic decathlon champion in 2004 or Petra Kvitová when she won Wimbledon. Krpálek was the only Czech to win gold at the Rio Games and the medal is worth millions of crowns to him, said Mr. Černošek. 

Zeman to not appear with anti-Muslim campaigner Konvička again

23-08-2016 13:30 | Ian Willoughby

President Miloš Zeman will not appear in public again with Martin Konvička, an anti-Muslim campaigner who organised a mock Islamic State invasion in central Prague on Sunday, the president’s spokesperson said on Tuesday. Mr. Zeman shared the stage with the populist politician at a public event on November 17 last year but that situation will never be repeated, spokesperson Jiří Ovčáček told reporters. He also said the president condemned four men kidnapped in Lebanon who were suing the Czech state for compensation; they had “infinite cheek” and should actually reimburse the state for the costs incurred, according to Mr. Zeman. 


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