The Foreign Affairs Committee of the upper house of parliament, the Senate,
has condemned Russia’s detention of Ukrainian ships in the Black Sea.
Members of the committee recalled the right of vessels to access the Sea of Azov, to where they were headed on Sunday.
Russia claims the Ukrainian vessels had crossed into its waters, but that is based on its illegal claim to Crimea, which it seized in 2014.
Under a treaty ratified by Ukraine and Russia in 2004 that is still in force, the Sea of Azov and Kerch Strait were defined as shared territorial waters.
On Monday, members of the lower house’s Foreign Affairs Committee advocated tougher sanctions against Russia, while the Czech foreign minister has spoken of forcing a reduction in the relatively high number of diplomats at Russia’s Embassy in Prague.
Czech police say a criminal gang based in Karviná, near the Polish border,
over the past two years sold an astounding 163 kilos of crystal meth, known
locally as Pervitin.
The street value of the drug could have been between 100 million to 200 million crowns.
Police said last week they arrested seven members of the gang at various locations throughout the country. They had used highly sophisticated methods to avoid their production and distribution networks from being detected.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in is wrapping up an official visit to the
Czech Republic on Wednesday.
He is due to hold talks with Prime Minister Andrej Babiš that will focus on bilateral relations, cultural exchanges and the situation on the Korean peninsula.
On Tuesday, Moon Jae-in met with Koreans living in this country. From Prague, he is heading to Buenos Aires for a Group of Twenty summit.
The Czech Republic is for the first time celebrating Red Wednesday, a
global event whose goal is to remember those who cannot practise their
faith freely throughout the world.
In a show of solidarity, a number of churches, synagogues and other religious sites throughout the country will be illuminated in red during the evening. In Prague, these include the St. Nicholas Church on Old Town Square and the Old-New Synagogue in Josefov, the historic Jewish quarter.
A conference on the role of religion in society is also underway in Prague, attended by representatives of Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), the pontifical foundation that launched the Red Wednesday initiative in support of persecuted Christians.
The new Prague City Council leadership has decided to restore rather than
tear down Libeňský most, a dilapidated bridge built in 1928, Prague Lord
Mayor Zdeněk Hřib (Pirates) has announced.
The previous Prague City Council leadership had backed demolishing Libeň Bridge but suspended a final decision following protests from conservationists, architects and engineers, among others.
Libeňský most was blocked to traffic for nearly two months to carry out emergency repairs early this year.
The concrete bridge is the longest one in Prague. It was designed by architects Pavel Janák and František Mencl in the Cubist style and opened to the public on April 29, 1928 for the tenth anniversary of the founding of Czechoslovakia.
Viktoria Plzeň have boosted their chances of coming third in their group
in football’s Champions League after a 2:1 away win over CSKA Moscow on
Tuesday evening. The Czech side went behind in Moscow before overturning
the deficit with goals from Roman Procházka, who had earlier missed a
penalty, and Lukáš Hejda.
With the two qualifying positions in the group won by Real Madrid and Roma, Plzeň are vying with CSKA for third spot and a place in the Europa League after Christmas. With both on equal points, Plzeň welcome Roma on the final match day in a fortnight while CSKA visit Real.
Marian Jurečka has announced his intention to run for the post of chairman
of the Christian Democrats at a congress in March. The former minister of
agriculture informed his party’s members that he would stand in an email,
Mr. Jurečka, who is the Christian Democrats’ first deputy leader, hopes to replace current chairman Pavel Bělobrádek, who had previously said he would not seek re-election. Jan Bartošek and Marek Výborný are also challenging for the leadership of the opposition grouping.
Czech President Miloš Zeman and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
have officially opened a new Czech House in Jerusalem. The facility will be
home to a Czech Centre and CzechTrade, CzechInvest and CzechTourism
Mr. Netanyahu said at Tuesday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony that Israel had no better friend in the Eastern Hemisphere than the Czech Republic. For his part, Mr. Zeman said he firmly believed that on his next visit to the country he would open a Czech Embassy in Jerusalem.
The Czech head of state advocates moving the Czech Embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv. The switch is not currently planned by the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The number of newly registered HIV cases in the Czech Republic has
evidently fallen slightly, Czech Television reported on Tuesday. While last
year 254 new cases of HIV were recorded, the number for the first 10 months
of this year was 178.
Experts say the decline can most likely be attributed to the introduction of new medicines to treat HIV some years ago.
Gay men account for two-thirds of newly discovered cases of HIV in the Czech Republic and their number has fallen year-on-year. By contrast, the number of heterosexuals found to have the disease has increased by a quarter.