Czech senator Jaroslava Moserova has been awarded the French Order of Merit by President Jacques Chirac. A doctor who specialised in burns, she was the first to treat Jan Palach after he burnt himself to death in 1969 in protest of the Soviet invasion of his homeland. Jaroslava Moserova entered politics after the Velvet Revolution, later serving as ambassador to Australia and New Zealand. She stood unsuccessfully for president last year.
Vets suspect they have uncovered a fifteenth case of BSE in the Czech Republic. The suspected case is from a farm in the Svitava region in the eastern part of the country. The results of a third test should be available on Wednesday. The first case of BSE in the Czech Republic was uncovered in June of 2001 when the State Veterinary Office imposed strict food safety measures in connection with BSE. If Wednesday's results are positive some 50 heads of cattle will have to be put down at the farm.
A 14-year-old boy has admitted to stabbing to death his classmate aged 13,
outside a school in the north Moravian village of Hanusovice. It is not
clear what motivated his actions, but there is speculation that bullying
may have been behind the attack. Jan Petrek bled to death minutes after
being stabbed in the chest and throat during a fight near his school on
Monday morning. Czechs have been alarmed by a growing number of violent
crimes committed by minors in recent months.
In January a 13 year old schoolgirl was raped and stabbed to death by a classmate and recently five boys under the age of fifteen stabbed a woman in her 80s to death with a pair of scissors, stealing her money. Justice Minister Pavel Nemec has said he will speed up moves in Parliament to lower the age of criminal responsibility, now set at fifteen.
President Vaclav Klaus has requested that he be informed in detail about
allegations the police bugged phone calls made to him by a businessman,
the newspaper Lidove noviny reported on Monday. Two days previously the
daily said the police had listened in on calls made to Mr Klaus by Radko
Pecic, a good friend of the president's under investigation in connection
with a fraud case.
Wire-tapping has been in the headlines for several weeks, since the leader of the opposition Civic Democrats said his phone had been bugged since he was elected two years ago. At the end of last week, President Klaus called on the interior minister to dismiss the chief of police, after the latter made statements evidently making light of wire-tapping.
The president is due to discuss the matter with Prime Minister Stanislav Gross on Tuesday.
Czech football coach Zdenek Zeman is making the headlines in Italy, after taking the small club Lecce to second place in the country's first division. He has played down the club's successful start to the season, saying their main aim is still to avoid relegation. A former coach at Lazio and Roma, Mr Zeman sparked a huge controversy in 1998 when he raised questions about possible drug-taking in Serie A.
Over 600 employees at steelmakers Ispat Nova Hut have accepted severance pay equivalent to 25 months' salary, a spokesman for the north Moravian company said on Monday. Ispat Nova Hut plans to lay off 2,000 of its 11,000 workers by the end of the year. The redundancy pay offer - which is unusually generous by Czech standards - is open to employees until the middle of November.
The former owner of Sparta Prague football club, Petr Mach, has been found not guilty of large scale fraud by a court in Prague. Mr Mach had been accused of not repaying a bank loan of 160 million crowns (over five million euros). He was released from prison last year after serving a two-year term for not paying import tax on a luxury car.
A study into the costs of Prague hosting the Olympic Games in either 2016 or 2020 should be completed by the end of the year, the city's mayor, Pavel Bem, said on Monday. Mr Bem said while holding the Games in the Czech capital would cost over 100 billion crowns, they would still be cheaper than other recent Olympics.
Mr Klaus has sent a letter to the president of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, saying he is disquieted by reports about the country's recent referendum, which allows the president to serve more than the previous limit of two terms. The Czech president said there was evidence of irregular voting in the poll.