News Demonstrations in support of Ukraine held in four Czech cities

09-03-2014 13:55 | Daniela Lazarová

Demonstrations against the Russian intervention in Crimea were held in four Czech cities over the weekend. The protests, held under the motto "For Your and Our Freedom", were staged in Prague, Brno, Plzen and Karlovy Vary, and were attended by Ukrainians and Russians living in the Czech Republic as well as Czechs concerned about the recent developments in Crimea. Among those who joined the protest in Prague was the former foreign minister Karel Schwarzenberg who said he felt the need to show solidarity with Ukraine in this this difficult time. He recalled that the Czechs experienced twice what the Ukrainians are experiencing today, making a reference to the German occupation in 1939 and the Soviet-led invasion in 1968.

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Prague proton centre would treat UK cancer boy Ashya on condition of documentation

02-09-2014 13:07 | Ian Willoughby

The Proton Therapy Centre in Prague has said it is ready to treat Ashya King, a five-year-old English boy from who has a brain tumour and whose parents are being held in custody after removing him a hospital in the UK. The Proton Therapy Centre, which received a request for help from the boy’s father on August 20, said it could begin giving him proton beam treatment soon if the necessary documentation was produced. Its director of strategy, Iva Taťounová, said it could deal with the costs at a later date. The boy and his family were found in Spain following a Europe-wide search by police. 

Czech coach philosophical about star players’ lack of game time

02-09-2014 12:52 | Ian Willoughby

Speaking on the eve of a friendly against the USA in Prague, Czech football manager Pavel Vrba said he was curious how players who have not appeared for their clubs would look in training and during the match itself. Neither of the team’s leading players, Tomáš Rosický of Arsenal and Petr Čech of Chelsea, have performed so far this season. Vrba said they would on the other hand be rested for Wednesday’s game, which precedes a European Championship qualifier against the Netherlands next week. 

National Museum takes possession of materials from Museum of the Workers’ Movement

02-09-2014 12:06 | Ian Willoughby

The National Museum in Prague has taken possession of 700,000 documents and other items from the Museum of the Workers’ Movement. The materials map Czech and Czechoslovak political, social and cultural history in the second half of the last century. Among the acquisitions are the written capitulation of German forces in Prague on May 8 1945, the original manuscript of letters written by Communist journalist Julius Fučík shortly before his execution by the Nazis, a bust of Lenin and a portrait of Communist president Gustáv Husák. Some of the items will go on display in the National Museum’s main building, which is undergoing renovations due to conclude in 2018. 

Police arrest man bearing gun at Prague’s Střešovice hospital

02-09-2014 11:34 | Ian Willoughby

Police in Prague have arrested a man who threatened people with a weapon at an emergency admissions building at the city’s Střešovice hospital on Tuesday morning. They subdued the man by using a taser electroshock weapon and took him away for questioning, police spokesperson Tomáš Hulan told the Czech News Agency. Nobody was injured during the incident. 

New documentary about Czech traveller Miroslav Zikmund screened

02-09-2014 11:02 | Ian Willoughby

A new feature-length documentary about the famous Czech traveller Miroslav Zikmund received a pre-premiere screening in his town of Zlín on Monday night. Petr Horký’s film Století Miroslava Zikmunda (Miroslav Zikmund’s Century) will enter cinema distribution on Thursday. Speaking at a sold-out Velké kino cinema, Mr. Zikmund, who is 95, recalled presenting the pair’s first full-length film on the same stage in the 1950s with his travelling partner Jiří Hanzelka, who died in 2003. The two visited more than 80 countries in a Tatra car between 1947 and 1950 and 1959 and 1964 before being barred from travelling or participating in public life after 1968. 

Para-cycling champion Ježek in serious but stable condition after accident

02-09-2014 10:21 | Daniela Lazarová

Czech Paralympics champion Jiří Ježek, who was seriously injured at the World Championship in Greenville on Sunday is in serious but stable condition and will have to undergo more surgery in the coming days, according to his coach Viktor Zapletal. The 39-year-old suffered a serious chest injury requiring emergency surgery and several fractures. Doctors were planning to operate on his arm on Tuesday but may have to put off surgery for fear of infection. There is no word on when he could be transported home. 

Cabinet to debate EC’s proposal for tightened sanctions against Russia on Wednesday

02-09-2014 09:57 | Daniela Lazarová

The Czech government has received the EC’s proposal for new sanctions against Russia and the cabinet will meet to debate the proposal on Wednesday, the Office of the Government announced in a press release on Tuesday morning. A tripartite meeting of government officials, trade union leaders and employers will be held on Thursday to debate the impact of the proposed sanctions. The Czech prime minister said at the EU summit that the country reserved the right to reject the sanctions should they cause disproportionately high economic losses. His cautious stand has come under fire from opposition parties and the coalition Christian Democrats who likened it to the Munich Agreement of 1938. The opposition parties have demanded that a special session of cabinet be held on the issue. 

Opposition parties want special session of Parliament on sanctions issue

01-09-2014 17:26 updated | Daniela Lazarová

The opposition centre-right parties TOP 09 and the Civic Democrats say they are outraged by the prime ministers stance and are demanding a special session of Parliament to “restore the dignity of the Czech Republic and defend its reputation as a country which respects freedom, democracy and international law". TOP 09 deputy chair Miroslav Kalousek described the prime minister’s stand as “short-sighted, alibistic and cowardly”. Mr. Sobotka has also come under fire from Czech MEPs. 

Agriculture minister says country might consider ban on imports for dumping prices

01-09-2014 16:54 updated | Daniela Lazarová

Agriculture Minister Marian Jurečka said on Monday that should the EC fail to help farmers and food producers hit by the EU sanctions against Russia, the Czech Republic might ban the imports of goods for dumping prices. Czech farmers and food producers fear that the expected glut of food products in Europe stemming from the sanctions might result in the Czech market being flooded with goods sold for prices below production costs. 

Czech Railways back in the black

01-09-2014 16:51 | Daniela Lazarová

Czech Railways is back in the black showing a profit of 158 million crowns at the end of the second quarter, the ctk news agency reports. The profit was generated mainly by revenues from passenger transport and cost-cutting measures in the areas of marketing and legal services. Freight transport showed a profit of 540 million. 

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