News Ukrainian injured in Maidan clashes dies in the Czech Republic
A fifty-three-year-old Ukrainian national who was critically injured during the clashes on Maidan square in February has died in the Czech Republic. Jurij Sydorchuk was transported to Prague in a coma along with a group of other Ukrainians in need of medical care. He never came out of the coma and in view of the serious brain damage he suffered doctors predicted that his chances of recovery were slim. According to the Ukrainian embassy members of his family have already arrived in the Czech Republic to repatriate his body. All expenses are being covered within the MEDEVAC humanitarian aid programme.
For the daily news summary, available after 8pm CET, click here.
Ex-police officer Karel Kadlec has been given a two-year driving ban and an eight-month probation period for a drink driving accident in which he crashed into a vehicle which had stopped for pedestrians at a crossing. The accident took place last year; Mr Kadlec took a breathalyser but refused to provide a blood sample following the incident. The defendant has already appealed the court decision. The former police officer was involved in a separate incident this April: he is charged with having purposely crashed his vehicle into 29 parked cars in Prague’s Vinohrady district.
Despite announcements of new Chinese acquisitions in the Czech Republic, Chinese capital in Czech companies decreased in volume this year, according to an annual report by the consulting agency Bisnode. Capital in Czech firms fell by around 616 million to 5.21 billion crowns, a decrease of around ten percent. The total number of domestic companies with Chinese owners decreased by 137 to 2,086, according to analysis of ownership structure published by the agency; the volume of Chinese capital in Czech firms in 2014 and 2015 had reached historic highs: increasing by 110 percent from 2.77 to 5.83 billion crowns.
Deputy Prime Minister Pavel Bělobrádek has echoed the prime minister’s call for Auschwitz survivor George Brady to be given a state award in recognition of his life’s work. Bělobrádek said that Mr. Brady was clearly a deserving nominee and since he had been promised the award it would be honourable to deliver on that promise. The 88-year-old Auschwitz survivor, who arrived in Prague on Sunday night, said he has been informed he would get the Order of T. G. Masaryk by the chief of Prague Castle protocol Jindřich Forejt. According to aktualne.cz Mr. Brady was on the list of nominees but was removed from it after his nephew Culture Minister Herman met with the Dalai Lama.
Two potential witnesses to conversation in which president reportedly threatened minister heard nothing
Two potential witnesses to a conversation in which President Zeman allegedly threatened Culture Minister Daniel Herman that if he met with the Dalai Lama his uncle, Auschwitz survivor George Brady, would not receive a state award, say they are unable to confirm the exchange. Trade Minister Jan Mládek and Transport Minister Dan Tok say that although they were within hearing, they were speaking to others and not paying attention to the conversation between the president and culture minister. President Zeman admitted that he had asked Culture Minister Herman not to meet with the Tibetan spiritual leader but denied having threatened him. The culture minister’s claim has sent shock waves around the country and many politicians, academics and cultural figures are planning to boycott the award-giving ceremony at Prague Castle on the occasion of Czechoslovak Independence Day, October 28.
Homeopathy sceptics in a number of cities in the Czech Republic and Slovakia staged a mass "overdose" of homeopathic remedies, in a bid to prove they have no effect. In Prague homeopathy critics, among them doctors, vets and members of the Sysifos club of sceptics met on Palacký square where they demonstrated the production homeopathy medicine on homeo-rum which they offered the public. Similar happenings by homeopathy sceptics have been held abroad.
Cardinal Dominik Duka celebrated a mass at the Basilica of St Peter and St Paul at Vysehrad on Sunday in memory of the victims of the 1956 Hungarian Uprising. The uprising, which lasted from October 23 until November 10, 1956, started as a student protest and quickly grew into was a nationwide revolt against the government and its Soviet-imposed policies. It was brutally crushed by Soviet troops who invaded the country. Over 2,500 Hungarians were killed in the conflict, and 200,000 people fled the country. Mass arrests and denunciations continued for months after.
Terezin and Auschwitz survivor George Brady, 88, who is at the centre of an awrd scandal that has reverberated across the political scene, arrived in the Czech Republic late Sunday afternoon. Mr. Brady expressed regret over the developments surrounding his award, but said that even if he was no longer up for a state award, he had wanted to visit his homeland. Palacký University in Olomouc has said it would be honoured to give Mr. Brady an academic award in recognition of his life’s work. The visit has spark great media interest and journalists were at the airport awaiting his arrival.
The head of the State Nuclear Safety Authority Dana Drábová has suggested that a deep nuclear waste storage site should be built in the vicinity of one of the country’s nuclear power plants, be it Temelín or Dukovany. Drábová told Czech Television that the Industry and Trade Ministery had made a mistake in trying to find a new locality. Drábová said the inhabitants of villages near Dukovany had indicated an interest in geological tests in return for adequate compensation. The ministry’s plans to conduct geological tests at seven other localities raised a storm of opposition. The deep nuclear waste storage site should be built by 2065.
A real estate boom fueled by low mortgage rates has sent up housing prices in Prague, making it one of the costliest cities to live in, Czech Television reported. Czechs with an average salary now have to work eleven years for a flat of approximately seventy square meters. An Austrian would need to work for nine years to acquire a similar flat in Vienna, while a German would only need to work for six years to buy a one in Berlin. London, Paris or Brussels are more expensive. An average flat of seventy square meters in Prague costs approximately 7.5 million crowns. Just a year ago Czechs needed to work less than ten years to acquire it.
Monday should be partly cloudy to overcast with scattered showers in the north-western parts of the country and day temperatures between 9 and 12 degrees Celsius.