The coalition ANO party would win around 25.5 percent of the vote, 5.5 percent less than two months ago, according to a new poll by the TNS Aisa agency released on Sunday. The senior coalition Social Democrats would come in second, with 17 percent, followed by the Communist party with 13.5 percent of the vote. The centre-right TOP 09 and Civic Democrat parties would also pass the five-percent threshold to enter the lower house, as would the Christian Democrat and Dawn parties.
Heavy storms are likely to hit western and southern Bohemia on Sunday afternoon, meteorologists have warned, adding that torrential rain might flood low-laying places such as basements and cellars. A supermarket in Tachov, in western Bohemia, had to be evacuated and closed after rain flooded the roof of the structure, the local fire brigade said.
Czech Foreign Minister Lubomír Zaorálek will later this month travel to Baghdad and the Kurdish capital Erbil to discuss his country’s shipments of ammunition for the Kurdish forces, Mr Zaorálek told Czech TV on Sunday. The Czech government will supply ammunition for AK-47 assault rifles and machine guns, hand grenades as well as anti-tank rockets, in total worth over 40 million crowns. US military aircraft will help transfer the material to Iraq, Mr Zaorálek said.
President Miloš Zeman is not planning to host an official party marking his upcoming 70th birthday, a spokesman for the president said. A small number of the president’s relatives, friends and collaborators are to attend a private party at the presidential retreat in Lány several days before September 28 when the president turns 70, the spokesman said. However, a concert by Prague Castle guards band might be held for those who wish to congratulate the president.
Several cities in the Czech Republic and abroad including Brussels, Oxford, Plzeň and Hradec Králové are looking to unveil Havel’s Place memorials dedicated to the late Czech president Václav Havel, the news website lidovky.cz reported on Sunday. The memorial sculpture in the form of two chairs and a table around a linden tree was first unveiled in Washington in 2013, followed by Dublin, Barcelona and Prague. Installations of the monument are overseen by Prague’s Václav Havel Library.
An artistic project exploring the impact of the 1620 Battle of White Mountain will begin with an ecumenical service in Prague on Sunday. Entitled White Mountain 2014, the project seeks to revive a debate on the significance of the battle which occurred in November 1620 on the outskirts of Prague. A clash between Protestant and Catholic forces on the eve of the Thirty Years’ War, the battle is seen as a key moment in Czech history, having cemented Habsburg rule of the Czech lands for nearly three centuries. Organizers said a grave of soldiers killed in the battle will be temporarily rearranged as part of the project which runs until November.
Some 17,000 people saw an open-air performance of the opera The Devil and Kate by Antonín Dvořák’s in Prague on Saturday. Performed by the ensemble of the National Theatre and Prague Chamber ballet, the opera was staged at an amphitheatre in Divoká Šárka, a nature reserve in the capital north-western outskirts. Operas were first performed there in the early 20th century, and the tradition was revived in 2005.
The European Commission has accepted the Czech Republic’s objections to some of the EU’s planned new sanctions against Russia, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka told reporters on Saturday. Mr Sobotka said the commission’s original proposal could threaten Czech machinery exports to Russia; however, these will now be protected “to the highest possible extent”. The Czech PM also said that if the current ceasefire between the Ukrainian army and pro-Russian separatists holds, the planned new round of sanctions could be postponed.
The 21st annual Czech International Air Fest is held at the weekend at an airport in Hradec Králové, east Bohemia. Military aircraft from nine countries including the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Germany and Croatia are participating in the show, organizers said. Belgium Air Force’s acrobatic team, the Red Devils, are making their premiere at the show this year.
Only a few dozen voters have so far cast their ballots in a local referendum on gambling ban held on Saturday in Holešov, eastern Moravia, the news agency ČTK reports. Supporters of the ban say it’s unlikely the required 35 percent of voters will turnout out in order of the vote to be binding; they complain that local authorities refused to hold the referendum simultaneously with next month’s local elections when much higher turnout is expected.