People gathered on Wenceslas Square and other sites on Monday to pay homage
to the memory of student martyr Jan Zajíc, who set himself on fire 50
years ago, on the 21st anniversary of the communist putsch of February
Zajíc, aged 18 at the time of his death, was inspired by university student Jan Palach, who a month earlier made the same sacrifice in an effort to rouse the nation in the face of Soviet occupation.
Days after announcing they had traced all deliveries of Polish beef
infected with the Salmonella virus, Czech veterinary inspectors now say
another metric ton of suspect beef from the same source was imported into
Polish authorities informed their Czech counterparts about another shipment of 1,164 kilogrammes of potentially infected meat under the terms of a rapid alert system, Czech Television reports.
Last week, the Czech Republic introduced strict controls on all beef imports from Poland.
Overall confidence in the Czech economy slightly increased in February
after declining three consecutive months, according to the Czech
Statistical Office (ČSÚ).
Confidence rose by 0.2 points to 98.2 points last month, it said. In annual terms, overall confidence in the economy is lower than in February 2018, and the confidence of both businesses and consumers has declined year on year.
The group Post Bellum, which collects oral histories on key events in Czech
history, has agreed with some 30 cities to stage events commemorating the
30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution.
Founder and director Mikuláš Kroupa told journalists the aim is to coordinate with municipalities and other civil society group events nationwide marking the November 1989 protest that led to the collapse of communism.
Post Bellum works to increase public understanding of 20th Century history, especially among younger generations. It has collected interviews from 8,962 people so far and published tens of thousands of audio and video clips, photos and scanned documents.
Prague City Council has agreed to introduce free public transport,
including trains, during smog alerts. The cost to the budget would be
approximately five million crowns per day.
In recent years, Prague City Hall has considered implement a range of regulations to be enforced during periods when the city is hit by particularly bad air pollution.
These include requiring factories to temporarily reduce output during periods of high smog barring trucks from entering the city.
About 200,000 foreigners work in the Czech capital and constitute one fifth
of the workforce, according to an analysis by the City’s Institute of
Planning and Development (IPR Prague).
Foreign workers in Prague are mainly filling jobs requiring unskilled labour it said. Two-thirds are citizens of non-EU countries.
At the end of June 2018, according to the study, most were citizens of Ukraine (49,306), Russia (23,338), Vietnam (12,765), US (6,556) and China (4,967).
Meanwhile, a study by Sociological Institute of the Academy of Sciences notes that four in five foreigners registered in Prague have a high school diploma or university degree.
The head of the National Cyber Security Office (NÚKIB) may be replaced due
to political pressure, the daily Mladá fronta Dnes reports.
Dušan Navrátil has been under fire since the Office issued a binding warning against ministries using Huawei’s products. The Chinese company threatened to sue after the Office did not rescind the warning.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO) has criticised Mr Navrátil for allegedly initially failing to explain his warning to the technology company.
Huawei has also been publicly backed by President Miloš Zeman, who has long promoted close business cooperation with China.
The 13th Mene Tekel international film festival against totalitarianism on
Sunday handed out awards for civic courage to leading personalities who
were persecuted for openly opposing the Nazi or Communist regimes.
The “Dame of Czech Culture” and “Knight of Czech Culture” awards went to writer and Holocaust survivor Erika Bezdíčková, writer and activist Helena Havlíčková, world-renown conductor Libor Pešek and rabbi, writer and playwright Karol Sidon, among others. Dissident singer-songwriter Karel Kryl was awarded in memoriam.
At the start of a two-day EU-Arab League summit in Sharm El-Sheikh, Czech
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš met for bilateral talks with Iraqi President
Barham Salih and Lebanese prime Minister Saad Hariri.
The Czech prime minister said later his talks with President Salih had focussed on possibilities opening up in business and trade and the post-war reconstruction of Iraq. Mr. Babiš welcomed the opportunity for a series of bilateral talks with Arab leaders which might otherwise have taken longer to arrange.
The two-day summit is the first joint meeting of EU and Arab League top officials. Among the topics on the agenda are migration, climate change, regional conflicts in Syria and Yemen, and the fight against terrorism.