Last year was the second hottest recorded at Prague’s Klementinum
observatory since 1775, when systematic temperature measurement began
The average temperature of 12.6 degrees Celsius for 2019 was 0.2 degrees cooler than the record year of 2018, according to the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (ČHMÚ).
This past summer was the hottest in 58 years, with average temperatures of 19.5 degrees Celsius, some 2.5 degrees above the norm for June through August.
British daily The Times of London has named Czech activist Mikuláš
Minář, founder of the ‘A Million Moments for Democracy’ initiative,
as among the most interesting personalities to watch in 2020.
The ‘Million Moments’ initiative has since last April held a series of protests calling for Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO) to step down over alleged EU subsidy fraud and a conflict of interest confirmed in a Brussels audit.
The Times’ “Rising stars: Twenty faces to look out for in 2020” list also includes Hong Kong protest organiser Jimmy Sham, Spain’s 14-year-old Princess Leonor, and Valérie Pécresse, president of the Île-de-France regional council, which includes Paris.
The Czech Veterinary Office (SVS) has warned poultry farmers and meat
importers of the possible spread of an ongoing bird flu epidemic in
The warning came after Polish authorities reported a fifth outbreak of the H5N8 strain of avian flu. Hundreds of thousands of birds could already be affected.
The SVS has asked poultry farmers to limit their contact with livestock and report any signs of abnormal behaviour. Avian influenza has been detected in five farms in Poland in recent weeks.
The last European bird flu epidemic was in Germany in 2017. At that time, 40 farms were affected and nearly 100,000 birds had to be culled.
Wind gusts of 60 to 75 kilometres per hour are expected on Saturday to hit
Central Bohemia, including Prague, as well as the regions of Vysočina,
Pardubice and South Moravia.
The strongest winds will come in the evening, predicts the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (ČHMÚ), which is suggesting people secure their windows and take extra caution when driving.
Last year 247 people died in railway accidents in the Czech Republic, up 8
percent year-on-year. Most casualties were pedestrians, a Railway
Infrastructure Administration (SŽDC) spokesman told the ČTK news agency.
Following a spate of lethal train accidents involving motorists last summer, the SŽDC announced plans to install a new CCTV system at selected railway crossings and, by 2023, erect barriers at most of the country’s big roads.
The killing of Iran's military leader Qasem Soleimani was “an
extraordinary step in a complicated situation”, Czech Foreign Minister
Tomáš Petříček told the CTK news agency on Friday. He said there was
no question Iran would retaliate, which would not only worsen the situation
in the Middle East but put at risk the progress made in the fight against
"I perceive the US air strikes in Iraq as an extraordinary step in a complicated situation. The guilt of people should be decided by the courts. I am not an expert in military strategy but similarly as the attack on the US Embassy, the killing of Iran’s military leader will not go unanswered. This will complicate the situation in the region and put at risk the progress made in the fight against Islamic State and international terrorism," Petříček said.
The Czech foreign minister said the top priority for Czech diplomacy now was to ensure the safety of posted Czech workers in Iraq, including diplomats, soldiers and police. The Czech Republic has an embassy and a consulate general in Iraq, as well as soldiers and military police serving in the country.
The fiscal year 2019 ended with a 28.5 billion crown deficit, Finance
Minister Alena Schillerová told reporters at a press briefing in Prague on
Friday. The 2019 state budget was projected with a 40 billion crown
deficit. Although it was narrowed by 11.5 billion, the deficit is still the
highest since 2015.
Opposition parties have criticized the result, arguing that there is no justification for a deficit budget at a time of solid economic growth. They moreover criticize the fact that large sums are spent on the social sphere rather than on investments.
The 2018 budget ended on a surplus of 2.9 billion, despite the projected 50 billion crown deficit.
The Czech cabinet is to debate a bill which would regulate the number of
invasive species in the Czech Republic, introducing a means of controlling
plants and animals that are a threat to native wildlife and cause
considerable ecological damage. Similar legislation is in effect in other
EU member states.
The number of non-indigenous flora and fauna species in Europe is around 12,000 and around 15 percent of those are considered invasive. The damage done is estimated at around 12 billion euros annually.
The number of non-indigenous or foreign species in the Czech Republic is estimated at around 2,000 and ten to fifteen percent of them are considered invasive.
The president of the Constitutional Court, Pavel Rychetský, has refuted
earlier claims that he might leave his post before his term in office
Judge Rychetský told the business daily Hospodarske Noviny that by some miracle his state of health had improved and he had the mental and physical strength required to handle his demanding duties in office for the remainder of his term which ends in 2023.
Judge Rychetský, 76, is serving his second ten-year term in office as president of the Czech Constitutional Court.