The funding for opposition Civic Democrat chairman Mirek Topolanek's luxurious Prague flat is being investigated by police after an anonymous report to the district state attorney's office. The complaint suggested that the purchase of Topolanek's 350,000-dollar flat was sponsored by the CEZ power utility company. Financial police are continuing the investigation.
The Czech Republic have drawn Holland in the play-offs for a place in the elite world group in tennis's Davis Cup. Czech number one Radek Stepanek is unlikely to return to the Czech team for September's tie: he has had a falling out with team manager Cyril Suk, and says he will not represent the Czech Republic as long as Suk remains in charge.
The first secretary of the Czech Embassy in Havana, Stanislav Kazecky, has
been given three days to leave Cuba after local authorities refused to
renew his visa, accusing him of subversive actions and working for the
United States. The Czech Foreign Ministry has called on Cuba's charge
d'affaires in Prague to explain the decision, which it regards as
tantamount to expulsion. It said the move was clearly in response to the
Czech Republic's policy of criticizing human rights abuses in Cuba and
supporting the island state's opposition. Reuters reported that Mr Kazecky
had close contacts with dissidents in Cuba.
A Czech Foreign Ministry spokesperson said it would respond in kind by not renewing the visa of a Cuban diplomat in Prague next week. Tensions have been high between the two countries for some years.
Czech President Vaclav Klaus today signed a bill to facilitate bankruptcy proceedings, strengthen creditors and provide aid to companies in financial trouble. It should prevent commercial bankruptcies from leading to automatic liquidation, which could save jobs. The law has also introduced personal bankruptcies for individuals and allows insolvent people to clear debts without the necessity of property seizure. The authors of the bill say it is intended to alter how the country's previously inadequate bankruptcy laws are viewed in Europe.
The Scottish bakery Lightbody has revealed plans to build a new production hall in the Louny area of north western Bohemia. The company, which supplies goods to international retail chains such as Tesco and Carrefour, wants to begin production at the plant in March of next year. The venture is expected to create around 600 jobs in the region.
The all-Czech semi final of the ATP tennis tournament in Valencia has seen Cyril Suk and his doubles team-mate Petr Pala, who entered the competition as second seeds, knocked out by fourth seeds Lukas Dlouhy and Pavel Vizner. The match, which ended 6:3, 5:7, 10:5, means Dlouhy and Vizner will play either Spain's Feliciano Lopez and Fernando Verdasco or David Skoch and Tomas Zib of Ukraine in the final.
Flood alerts have reached their third and highest level in Hradek u
Rokycan in western Bohemia, after morning rainfall raised water levels
in the Klabava river, which rose above the 2 metre threshold for
increasing the alert.
Meteorologists have issued a warning that further towns in Southern parts of the Czech Republic could also still be at risk of flooding. They said that continued rainfall and snow from the mountains could further increase levels in the Vltava and Lunice rivers over the weekend, but do not believe it will be sufficient to raise the flood alert to its highest stage in these regions.
Senator Martin Mejstrik is again pushing for Good Friday to be made a state holiday in the Czech Republic. Currently a bill on the issue also includes the scrapping of the International Women's Day as a day of national significance. But Mr Mejstrik says if that issue is dealt with separately, making Good Friday a holiday would have a greater chance of being passed in the left-dominated Chamber of Deputies.
The Czech foreign minister, Cyril Svoboda, is refusing to appear before a German parliamentary committee to answer questions about allegations that secret CIA planes stopped over in Prague. MP Max Stadler of Germany's Free Democratic Party called on Mr Svoboda to discuss the matter in Berlin. But he said it was unthinkable for a minister of the sovereign Czech state to be questioned by German deputies. Amnesty International reported last week that over 20 CIA planes had landed in Prague, an allegation denied by both the Czech foreign and defence ministries.
The second biggest party in the governing coalition, the Christian Democrats, is in danger of not winning enough support to remain in the Chamber of Deputies. A poll by the SC&C agency suggests the party would receive only 4 percent of the vote, falling below the necessary 5-percent threshold. The Civic Democrats are expected to come first in general elections in June, followed by the Social Democrats. Polls suggest the Green Party, who have no MPs at the moment, are now supported by around ten percent of the electorate.