News Czech Republic ready to deploy its air force in protection of Eastern European countries

23-03-2014 15:06 | Jan Richter

If asked, the Czech Republic is ready to deploy its military aircraft in protection of countries close to Ukraine, Defence Minister Martin Stropnický said. Speaking on Czech TV on Sunday, Mr Stropnický said no such petition had arrived; however, if need be, Czech fighter jets could be deployed in Romania or other countries in the region. The defence minister also said the Czech Army was most likely not going to take party in any massive NATO exercise in response to Russia’s military activities in Ukraine.

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Hockey: Forward Červenka named best player

03-05-2016 08:44 | Jan Velinger

Chomutov hockey forward Roman Červenka received three awards at a gala event on Monday evening, including best player of the regular season in the Tipsort Extraliga. Most of the awards, however, went to Liberec, who won this year’s playoffs; the team’s Radim Šimek clinched the award for MVP in the postseason. 

Study: Companies named after their owners benefit from greater trust

03-05-2016 08:27 | Jan Velinger

Companies in the Czech Republic named after their owners more easily nurture customer trust, which translates into increased profit, a study by the analytical firm Bisnode suggests. The study examined limited private companies with majority owners and other firms. It suggests that profitability among companies named after the owner was 0.5 percent higher than those with neutral names. Eleven percent of company founders 60 or older name their firm after themselves; while those under the age of 30 who do so are just five percent. Consumers seemed more likely to trust a company where the CEO was unafraid to put his or her name up front, standing fully behind their product, the analysis suggests. 

Police swoop in on man who fired shots into street near school

02-05-2016 16:47 | Jan Velinger

A police team was called to the scene of a shooting in Sudomeřice on Monday, closing off a nearby street as well as part of the village, and ordering a local school not to allow anyone to go outside. A 60-year-old suspect is believed to have fired gunshots into the street; no one was hurt in the incident. Police apprehended the man as he slept; children were then allowed to go home from the school with their parents. It is not yet known whether the suspected shooter was under the influence of alcohol or other substances. 

Leftist extremists charged with planning transport train attack

02-05-2016 16:35 | Jan Velinger

Five suspects, described as leftist extremists, have been charged by the state prosecutor for allegedly planning a terrorist attack on a transport train carrying military material, Czech Radio reported on Monday. Of the five, three reportedly began planning the attack, which was never carried out, in 2014. The would-be perpetrators planned to firebomb the train along a Prague railway route; the additional two suspects met in an apartment where the conspiracy was discussed and failed to report the plans to the police. The five, as well as a sixth individual who faces weapons charges, were apprehended in a police raid last April. If found guilty, the three primary suspects face up between 12 and 20 years in jail and the other two, up to three years behind bars. 

Government approves agriculture sector road map

02-05-2016 16:16 | Jan Velinger

The government on Monday approved an action plan for the agriculture sector up until the year 2030. According to Agriculture Minister Marian Jurečka, planned changes include lowering by tens of thousands of hectares rapeseed production, increasing the breeding of livestock, significantly boosting vegetable growth and markedly increasing the protection of arable land from soil erosion. According to available information, fruit orchards should increase from the current 14,500 hectares to 23,000 by 2030. By 2030, up to 60 percent of arable land should be protected from erosion compared to 11 percent now. 

Ministry spokeswoman: Macedonian officials in Prague have no knowledge of Czechs who were expelled

02-05-2016 15:55 updated | Jan Velinger

Macedonian officials in Prague say they have no knowledge of Czechs being expelled from Macedonia on accusations of vandalism, the spokeswoman for the Czech Foreign Ministry Michaela Lagronová has said. The Macedonian news agency Zhurnal reported on Sunday that two Czech citizens were expelled from Macedonia after being accused of damaging property during violent anti-government demonstrations in the capital Skopje. The two, aged 24 and 25, were reportedly barred from reentering the country. The Czech News Agency has since tried to contact the media which reported the story but so far without result. 

Industry and Trade Minister says only thing which can save OKD is if owner lowers demands

02-05-2016 15:36 | Jan Velinger

Industry and Trade Minister Jan Mládek has said that the only way that difficulties surrounding the ailing OKD mining company have a chance of being resolved without insolvency, is if the owner, the Ad Hoc Group, lower demands; otherwise insolvency will be the next step. The minister made the statement after the cabinet meeting on Monday, in which the troubled OKD (owned by NWR which belongs in turn to Ad Hoc) was only indirectly discussed. OKD management is to meet over the possibility of insolvency on Tuesday. Recently Ad Hoc offered to sell the government the company shares alone for around 3.2 billion crowns which the minister turned down as largely worthless. On Friday, the government made clear it would not step in but instead focus on helping miners who would be laid off. OKD employs almost ten thousand people. 

Students begin taking high school leaving exams

02-05-2016 14:02 | Jan Velinger

More than 19,000 students began taking the first part of their high school leaving exams, known as maturita, on Monday, choosing between math and a second language as optional subjects. Twenty-seven percent chose mathematics as their voluntary subject; compulsory in the exam, for example, is the Czech language. Education Minister Kateřina Valachová launched the exam day at the Prague Na Zatlance high school, telling journalists afterwards that when she was a student facing her own exams, she had had a bad case of nerves. The minister said she had said nothing of the sort to the students on the big day, however. In all, some 70,000 students are to take their leaving exams this term. 

Forty-one people died in traffic accidents in Czech Republic in April

02-05-2016 13:49 | Jan Velinger

Forty-one people died on Czech roads over the month of April, two fewer than the same period last year, ČTK confirmed; 149 people lost their lives in traffic accidents in the Czech Republic since the beginning of the year. That is fewer by eleven than the same period in 2015. The head of the traffic police, Tomáš Lerch, told the Czech News Agency that the lower number of fatalities may have been influenced by a colder Spring than usual, as there were fewer motorcyclists and cyclists on the road; the two belong to the highest-risk group when it comes to road accidents. 

Hockey: Jágr one of three finalists up for Masterson trophy

02-05-2016 12:20 | Jan Velinger

Legendary Czech hockey forward Jaromír Jágr has been confirmed as one of the three finalists this year for the Bill Masterson Memorial Trophy, awarded to the player best exemplifying the “qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey”. At 44, Jágr led his team the Florida Panthers on points this season – becoming the oldest player in NHL history to pass the 60 point plateau (he had 61). He helped his team win the Atlantic Division for the first time; hopes for a longer Stanley Cup playoff run were ended in the first round of the playoffs by the New York Islanders. A recent New York Times prolife mapped the player’s training regimen which has helped him stay at the top of his game. 


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