A Czech communist politician, Jaroslav Petelík, has denied having issued a comment on his Facebook profile suggesting the “hanging of right-wingers”, which, along with the “expropriation of entrepreneurs and their families” would improve the situation of most Czechs. Mr Petelík, who serves council member in one of Prague districts and also as an assistant to a communist MP, said it was an attack against him and his party, and accused his political opponents of posting the comment, adding he was going to file a criminal complaint over the issue.
Heavy show hit most part of the Czech Republic on Saturday, causing disruption in traffic and electricity supplies. Ice has formed on roads in the most affected regions of Krknonoše and Krušné Hory in the north and north-west of the country while several railway lines including a major Prague-Ústí nad Labem route – were blocked by fallen trees. The authorities have also warned of snow-related delays on some of the country’s highways including the D1 motorway between Prague and Brno. Dozens of homes, mainly in eastern Bohemia, have been cut from electricity supplies.
People in the Zlín region, in the east of the country, took the highest number of sick days in the country in the first nine month of the year, according to figures released by the Czech Social Security Administration on Saturday. People there took on average 57 days off due to sickness, compared to the national average of over 47 days. However, the Zlín region registered an annual decrease in both the number of sick days and the cases of sick leaves. The lowest number of sick days – 37 – was registered in Prague.
A week before the senior coalition Civic Democrat party’s election congress, Prime Minister and party chair Petr Nečas has warned against the fall of his government, the news website parlamentnilisty.cz reported. In a letter to members of his party, Mr Nečas said the cabinet would fall if agreement is not reached among Civic Democrat MPs on some of the government’s planned steps such as raising the VAT rates. The prime minister also analyzed his party’s overwhelming defeat in the recent Senate and regional elections which he blamed on the government’s failure to convince voters the country was moving in the right direction.
The clocks go back one hour at 3 AM on Sunday as daylight saving time ends in the Czech Republic this year and the country switches to Central European Time (CET). The change will affect about 10 international trains which will wait at stations for one hour before moving on, a spokesman for Czech Railways said. The only exception is the Prague-bound Euronight express from Košice, in Slovakia, which not make any stops in the early hours of Sunday and will therefore reach its destination an hour early..
Prime Minister Petr Necas has said he wants to meet with Ludmila Mullerova in person before proposing her appointment to the post of labour and social affairs minister. The prime minister said he wanted to hear Ms. Mullerova’s plans for the ministry and debate certain problem areas before making up his mind. Ms. Mullerova, a former deputy labour minister, who served as an aide to the outgoing Labour and Social Affairs Minister Jaromir Drabek has been selected by TOP 09 as the most suitable candidate for the past.
A bill on medicinal marihuana has gone into its third and final reading in the lower house. The legislation will allow patients with certain ailments to access a certain amount of marihuana on an electronic prescription. Although patients with multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease have long fought for this to be made possible there is criticism of the fact that the drug will have to be fully covered by the patient and will be ill-affordable at approximately 10 000 to 15 000 crowns per month. If the bill is approved by both houses of Parliament medicinal marihuana should be available in the spring of next year. In the first year it would be imported, giving Czech producers time to establish themselves and the authorities time to impose and effective control mechanism.
A bill which would amend the problematic law according to which both parents must give consent to their child’s medical treatment has gone through its first reading in the lower house and is to be debated by the health committee. According to the amendment the consent of one parent or that of the child alone would suffice. The existing legislation caused numerous problems when children needed urgent attention fast and one or both parents were not on hand to provide it. Not just parents but many doctors have called for it to be modified.
Defense Minister Alexander Vondra on Friday handed out awards for bravery and merit ahead of the country’s public holiday on Sunday marking the 96th anniversary of the birth of Czechoslovakia. Among those honored were SWW army veteran Karel Serak, pilot Milan Zahorsky who has served on nine foreign missions since 1992, benefactress and art collector Meda Mladkova, brain surgeon Vladimir Benes and kayaker and two-fold Olympic medal winner Stepanka Hilgertova.
Police have arrested eight more people in connection with the recent methanol crisis which claimed 30 victims. According to a police spokesman the eight people arrested are some of the ring-leaders of the bootleg liquor distribution network in Moravia. Charges are being pressed against all of the detained but in view of the ongoing investigation the police have not released any further details.
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