News Czech Television sends hockey championship erection adverts to sin bin

21-05-2014 15:18 | Chris Johnstone

Czech television has announced that it will ban adverts for erection pills for the remainder of the world ice hockey championships, according to new server The head of the public broadcaster Petr Dvorák told the broadcaster’s supervisory council that the move had been sparked by protests from viewers over the vulgar content of the ads and the likelihood that children were watching matches ahead of 10 pm. The final Czech group match with France on Tuesday evening was watched an average by 1.3 million viewers with even more expected for the semi-final clash with the United States.

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Czech woman loses right to see two sons taken into care in Norway

06-10-2015 15:26 updated | Ian Willoughby

The Norwegian authorities have ruled that the six-year-old son of Czech woman Eva Michaláková can be adopted by his current foster parents, Czech Television reported on Tuesday. She has also been barred from having any contact with her second son, who is 10. Norwegian social services took the two children into care in 2011 over suspicions of sexual abuse and neglect. Ms. Michaláková is planning to appeal the decisions, though a previous petition to hear the case was rejected by the European Court of Human Rights. The Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs, prime minister and president have in the past attempted to intercede on her behalf. The minister of foreign affairs, Lubomír Zaorálek, has asked the Norwegian ambassador to Prague, Siri Ellen Sletner, for a meeting on Tuesday. He said he would present her with a diplomatic note over what he said was an egregious breach of a previous agreement. 

Czech MEP calls for expulsion of Norwegian diplomat; not bad idea, says Zeman

06-10-2015 14:24 | Ian Willoughby

Christian Democrat MEP Tomáš Zdechovský on Tuesday called on the government to expel Norway’s ambassador to the Czech Republic in response to a decision under which Eva Michaláková will no longer be able to see her children taken into care four years ago. Mr. Zdechovský said Norway had stolen the Czech mother’s children and that its approach was reminiscent of the Nazis. Responding to the MEP’s call, the Czech president, Miloš Zeman, said expelling the Norwegian diplomat was not a bad idea. The head of state also backed Mrs. Michaláková’s planned appeal to the European Court of Human Rights. 

Hockey legend Jágr to revive 1990s mullet hairstyle

06-10-2015 13:55 | Ian Willoughby

The Czech ice hockey star Jaromír Jágr says he is bringing back the mullet hairstyle that he was famous for in the 1990s. Jágr, who is 43, told a reporter from the Miami Herald that he was reviving the long-at-the-back style after lobbying from Florida Panthers teammate Roberto Luongo. He had tweeted prior to a pre-season training camp that he was going to make it his mission to get the Czech to go back to the look with which he is most closely associated. “Guys we did it!!!!!,” Luongo wrote on Monday. 

Czechs to send more than approved 25 soldiers to Hungary

06-10-2015 12:03 | Ian Willoughby

The Czech Republic will send more than the 25 soldiers approved by the government on Monday to Hungary to help guard the country’s borders, the Czech prime minister, Bohuslav Sobotka says. He made the comment after a visit to the General Staff of the Czech Army on Tuesday. The concrete number to be sent in the second such deployment in December will be discussed at a meeting of Visegrad Four interior ministers later this week, Mr. Sobotka said. On Monday the Czech interior minister, Milan Chovanec, said that over 100 soldiers and police officers could be deployed to Hungary, which has this year seen an unprecedented number of illegal migrants. 

Šípek retrospective underway at Dancing House

06-10-2015 10:50 | Ian Willoughby

A retrospective exhibition of work by the Czech designer and architect Bořek Šípek has got underway at the Art Salon gallery in Prague’s Dancing House. The show includes almost 200 items created by the artist over the last two decades, including a vase he designed for Václav Havel. Mr. Šípek worked closely with the late president in his time at Prague Castle and the exhibition’s opening coincided with what would have been his 79th birthday on Monday. 

Education minister defends school head over slap

06-10-2015 10:49 | Ian Willoughby

The minister of education, Kateřina Valachová, has defended the director of a Prague elementary school who slapped a pupil, reported. The minister said she did not know all the details of the case but said that it raised issues of whether teachers received sufficient support in their psychologically demanding work. School head Miroslav Kovanda slapped a seventh grade pupil who made a cheeky remark at a Prague 8 elementary school in April. Speaking at a Teacher of the Year awards ceremony, Ms. Valachová said the principal regretted his action, which occurred in a heated situation that had escalated, and would not have reacted like that in normal circumstances. 

Trades unions demand equal conditions for immigrant workers

06-10-2015 09:03 | Chris Johnstone

Czech trades unionists have insisted that asylum seekers and foreigners with work permits be offered the same conditions as locals. The issue was discussed at Monday’s five hour long three-way meeting between the government, unions, and employers. Czech employers previously said around 5,000 jobs could easily be filled by immigrants. But some employers have talked about work for immigrants, with the implication that special conditions might be attached. Head of the Association of Industry and Transport, Jaroslav Hanák, said that the immigration issue was now likely to crop up regularly at tripartite meetings. 

Police to launch nationwide clampdown on under age drinking

06-10-2015 09:02 | Chris Johnstone

Czech police are to launch what they describe as one of their biggest clampdowns ever on under age drinking in bars and restaurants. Details of the clampdown to be launched Friday were outlined on Monday. Several thousand police will take part in the nationwide checks against a background of increasing alcohol consumption by under age Czechs. Surveys suggest that Czech teenagers are some of the biggest alcohol drinkers across Europe. Business found to be breaking the law by serving the under aged with alcohol can be fined 5,000 crowns on the spot with further penalties to follow. 

Karel Schwarzenberg to step down as TOP 09 party leader

05-10-2015 18:37 | Chris Johnstone

The leader of the TOP 09 political party and former Czech foreign minister, Karel Schwarzenberg, has announced that he will not stand for re-election to the top party post at its upcoming party congress. His position as party chairman was due to be renewed in November. Schwarzenberg, cited health reasons as one reason for his refusal to stand again. He denied, however, that he was withdrawing from public life and said he would stand in elections to the lower house of parliament as one of the leaders for the centre-right party in Prague. The front runner to lead the party would appear to be deputy chairman and former finance minister Miroslav Kalousek. 

New car sales surge in Czech Republic

05-10-2015 17:55 updated | Chris Johnstone

Sales of new cars in the Czech Republic have soared by almost 21 percent in the first nine months of the year with the total reaching just over 171,000. The country’s biggest car maker, Škoda Auto, has seen its sales climb by 28 percent to just short of 55,000. It's slice of the Czech market has risen to 32 percent. Volkswagen is second in the local sales league followed by Hyundai. The latest figures were published Monday by the Car Importers’ Association. 


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