Czech politicians have congratulated Volodymyr Zelensky on his victory in
Ukraine’s presidential elections. Prime Minister Andrej Babiš wished him
patience and strength saying he would lead the country at an immensely
difficult time. Czech
Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček wrote on Twitter that Zelensky’s decisive victory showed the strength of civil society. He said Ukraine had made considerable progress on the road to democratic reforms and expressed the hope that Ukraine’s future president would continue in this effort.
The heads of twelve foreign museums and galleries have written an open
letter to Prime Minister Andrej Babiš expressing shock and dismay at the
sacking of the head of the Prague National Gallery Jiří Fajt.
The heads of national galleries and cultural institutions in Europe and the US say that Fajt was instrumental in boosting cooperation among art institutions and raised the prestige of the National Galley in Prague.
They say his work has served as an inspiration for galleries elsewhere in the world. Fajt was sacked by the Czech culture minister last week following an in-depth audit at the gallery.
Czech hockey coach Luděk Bukač has died at the age of 83.
He led the national team to victory in the 1985 and 1996 world championships in Prague and Vienna and helped the team to a silver medal in the 1984 Olympics in Sarajevo.
The president of the Czech Hockey Association Tomáš Král highlighted Bukač’s contribution to Czech hockey, saying the country had lost a great hockey coach and a great man.
The Interior Ministry wants to focus on hate speech on social networks and
sites spreading fake news, according to its 2018 report on extremism and
priorities outlined for the future.
The ministry says verbal expressions of racism and xenophobia are concentrated around sites featuring fake news, conspiracy theories and disinformation.
It wants to launch a counter-offensive in the form of a campaign based on reliable information on migration and integration of foreign nationals in Czech society.
The police are investigating a racial attack against lower house deputy
Dominik Feri in Moravia on Sunday.
The incident happened in the town of Borsice where Feri was attending a cultural event. He was attacked on the streets of the town by two men who knifed and punched him yelling that „niggers had no place in politics“.
Feri was treated at the local hospital and is said to be recovering.
Politicians across the political spectrum have condemned the attack. Dominik Feri, who has Ethiopian roots, is an MP for the centre-right TOP 09 party.
Czech politicians have joined in the widespread international condemnation
of the tragic Easter attacks in Sri Lanka.
President Miloš Zeman called the attacks “monstrous”, offering heartfelt condolences to the families of those killed and injured. Prime Minister Andrej Babiš likewise expressed shock over the news saying an attack against believers who had come together to celebrate Easter Sunday was “unbelievable” and “unacceptable”.
Deputy Prime Minister Jan Hamáček said he was appalled by the tragedy and stressed that the Czech government was ready to help in whatever way possible. Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček also condemned the attacks, offering condolences to the families of the victims and wishing the injured a speedy recovery.
According to local police sources the number of people killed in the attacks has now reached 290 with at least 500 people injured.
The Czech Foreign Ministry said it had no news so far indicating that Czech nationals may have been among those killed or injured. It said any Czechs in need on the island should turn to the Czech Embassy in Delhi for help.
Around 400 Czech citizens are currently in Sri Lanka which was hit by a
series of terror attacks in churches and hotels on Easter Sunday, Czech
Television reports. The local Czech embassy says no Czechs fell victim to
the attacks which current reports say claimed 185 lives including those of
Czech leaders have reacted to the attacks. President Miloš Zeman expresed his condolences and called the attacks “monstrous”. Prime Minister Andrej Babiš said the news was “unbelievable” and “unacceptable”. Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček condemned the attacks while also expressing his condolences. He reminded Czechs that the local embassy and consulate are there for them.
The Czech Republic’s current oil reserves would only last for 83 days of net import, which is three days less than last year, the head of Administration of State Material reserves Pave Švagr told the Czech News Agency on Thursday. The Czech Republic has not been fulfilling the European Directive on oil and crude reserves for three years now. According to the directive, EU countries with no oil of their own must maintain emergency stock of crude oil or petroleum products equal to at least 90 days of net import.
Minister of Justice Jan Kněžínek has announced his decision to step down
amid growing speculation that he would also be part of a pending government
reshuffle. Mr Kněžínek said he had considered resigning for some time.
Mr Kněžínek will be replaced in the post by Marie Benešová, who served as justice minister in the government of Jiří Rusnok.
The Minister of Justice said he would leave office on April 30. The two other ministers to be replaced are Transport Minister Dan Ťok and Minister of Industry and Trade Marta Nováková.