Approximately 100 passengers arriving at Václav Havel Airport Prague on
Sunday morning were evacuated from the plane by slides due to a suspected
fire. No one was injured, airport spokesperson Marika Janoušková said.
Tunisia is a popular foreign destination among Czech tourists. The incoming Tunisair flight had departed from Monastir, a coastal city in the Sahel area.
A number of Czech politicians have paid tribute to US Senator John McCain,
a Vietnam veteran and former presidential candidate, who died on Saturday
from brain cancer at the age of 81.
In various statements, political leaders described the outspoken Republican as role model, freedom fighter and defender of democracy. Civic Democrat (ODS) chairman Petr Fiala described him as a brave man and friend of the Czech Republic while Top 09 party chairman Miroslav Kalousek described him as a principled leader admired around the world.
McCain will be missed not only by Americans, said the head of the foreign policy section of the presidential chancellery, Rudolf Jindrák.
The state budget for 2019 should have a deficit of 40 billion crowns,
Minister of Finance Alena Schillerová said in an interview with Czech
Television, noting a revised reading of macroeconomic data. Last month, the
deficit was projected at up to 50 billion crowns.
The 2019 budget approved by the government envisages increased funding for teachers’ salaries and pensions as well as reduced social welfare benefits. Most ministries can expect more state money, except for the Ministry of Health, which is projected to take in more from health insurers.
The Czech Republic awarded 14,847 contracts worth a total of 198.7 billion
crowns in the first half of the year, an increase of about a third in value
in annual terms, according to CEEC Research data.
The largest single tender, worth 14 billion crowns, was commissioned by Čepro in January for the supply of specific types of oil by rail. Construction and infrastructure contracts, as usual, made up the lion’s share of tenders.
To mark the 100th anniversary of Czechoslovakia's birth, the Prague
Chamber Orchestra will give a free concert on Sunday evening in Wallenstein
Garden, outside of the Senate building.
The renowned orchestra will perform works by Czech composers Antonín Dvořák and Leoš Janáček, as well as by international figures such as Mozart, Tchaikovsky and Mendelssohn. The hour-long concert begins at 5 pm.
Czechs spent 51.5 billion crowns in e-shops in the first half of the year,
11 per cent more in annual terms. Growth slowed during hot weather, which
came to the Czech Republic in April.
Overall spending is expected to rise, as since last year the Czech Republic has the largest number of e-shops in Europe per capita, while brick and mortar stores increasingly offer goods online. In 2017 e-shop sales grew 18 per cent to 115 billion.
The bark beetle infestation and drought contributed to a 38 per cent drop
profit for state-owned forester Lesy ČR’s in the first half of 2018.
Lesy ČR, which own almost half of the country’s forests, recorded a 20 per cent decline in sales and noted a dramatic fall in prices on the central European market.
President Miloš Zeman will meet Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (Ano) for a
working lunch on Monday at which they are expected to discuss filling the
post of foreign minister, now temporarily held by Social Democrat leader
Jan Hamáček, who is also interior minister.
According to the daily Právo, Social Democrat Jakub Landovský, currently a deputy defence minister, could be named to the position. President Zeman last month refused to name the Ano-Social Democrat coalition government’s choice as foreign minister, Social Democrat MEP Miroslav Poche.
Hamáček had said the Social Democrats would not push for court action over the president’s refusal to appoint their nominee, preferring to resolve the matter through dialogue. His party is due to meet on Friday to discuss the situation.
A ‘happening’ dedicated to eight dissidents who on August 25, 1968,
held a public protest on Moscow’s Red Square against the Soviet-led
invasion of Czechoslovakia was held in Prague on Saturday.
Eight modern activists recreated the events of half a century ago, including by bringing copies of the banners they held, such as one proclaiming “For your freedom and ours”, unfurled by Pavel Litvinov, whose grandfather Maxim Litvinov had been Stalin’s foreign minister in the 1930s.
Saturday’s action on Wenceslas Square was attended by Tatyana Baeva, along with Litvinov and Viktor Fajnberg, the last living participant in that 1968 demonstration.
Main organiser Zuzana Vaňková read out the names of all eight demonstrators and recalled the repression they suffered as a result. All received lengthy jail sentences or were locked up in psychiatric institutions.