The Czech Bishops Conference has protested against a new book by Communist
MP Miroslav Grebeníček in which he describes the Catholic Church as a
greedy, power-hungry institution which seeks to gain independence not just
from the state but its followers.
The general secretary of the Czech Bishops Conference, Stanislav Přibyl, said the book’s release was an outrage and further protested against the fact that Culture Minister Antonín Staněk of the Social Democratic Party had been present at the book launch.
The Social Democrats and the ANO party recently backed a Communist proposal for restitution money paid in compensation for church property confiscated by the Communist regime to be taxed.
The police will file charges against the twenty-eight year-old man who held
nine hostages at gunpoint in a branch of the Unicredit bank in Příbram on
Friday. He was disarmed by members of a rapid deployment force and arrested
several hours later.
The man reportedly wanted to draw attention to his personal problems and had no intention of robbing the bank. If convicted he could face a sentence of between five and twelve years in prison.
The police have charged five people with EU subsidy fraud in connection
with an EU grant of fifty million euros for the construction of a five star
hotel and wellness centre near Hluboká Castle in south Bohemia.
According to a police spokesperson an investigation into the case revealed serious financial irregularities. The money has already been paid out.
The Czech Defence Ministry says it needs to gain more information on
Germany’s plans to recruit nationals from other European countries as
part of a drive to beef up the country’s armed forces.
It has not rejected the idea outright, although Czech politicians have reacted negatively to the suggestion saying that army service should be tied to nationality.
According to former army chief of staff General Petr Pavel such a plan could damage the Czech Army by reducing the number of its own recruits.
According to the German daily Hamburger Abendblatt Germany has sounded out its European partners regarding the plan with different results; only four countries, including the Czech Republic, were prepared to discuss the issue.
The country’s public finances are shaping up better than expected and the
Czech Republic is heading for a balanced budget in 2018, Finance Minister
Alena Schillerová told journalists on Friday.
Originally the budget was approved with a projected deficit of 50 billion crowns. The minister said this was largely due to a better collection of taxes, following a series of measures to fight tax evasion.
Minister Schillerová said she would have the exact figures on January 3rd.
The opposition has criticized the huge discrepancy between the government’s fiscal plans and the reality.
A man holding eight people hostage in a branch of the Unikredit bank in the south Bohemian town of Příbram, was disarmed and detained by a special police squad on Friday. The motive for the crime remains unclear. According to the ctk news agency the man did not want to rob the bank but to attract attention to his personal problems and file charges against someone. All the hostages are safe.
Czech soldiers will take part in close to 200 training sessions at home and
abroad in 2019, according to information released by the Army-Chief-of
A Czech paratroopers unit will take part in a special forces training session in Kenya aimed at securing the release of hostages on foreign territory.
The biggest training session in the Czech Republic will be Czech Lion involving 500 soldiers from the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Poland.
Notaries who want to work in the Czech Republic will no longer have to have
Czech citizenship, but can come from any EU member state, under an
amendment to the notary code signed into law by President Milos Zeman.
The Justice Ministry prepared the amendment in response to a ruling by the European Court of Justice, which said the Czech citizenship condition for notaries was at variance with the agreement on freedom of movement for workers.
However, notaries who would like to work in the Czech Republic will still have to graduate from a Czech faculty of law, pass a notary exam in Czech and have good command of the language.
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