Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has apologised for calling two Czech members
of the European Parliament traitors. He made the apology to Tomáš
Zdechovský and Mikuláš Peksa in a radio interview on Tuesday and said
afterwards that the accusation had been exaggerated.
The prime minister criticised the two in connection with a delegation of MEPs who visited Prague in recent days as part of investigations of alleged conflict of interest on his part. He told reporters the pair were traitors who should defend Czech interests and described the EP delegation as a political mission.
Mr. Zdechovský said he had received death threats following Mr. Babiš’s allegation and that he was considering taking legal action against the PM.
On Tuesday the leader of the Mayors and Independents, Vít Rakušan, called on Prime Minister Babiš to apologise over a separate incident in which a recording captured him calling the party’s MP Věra Kovářová a “beast”.
Members of the Pirate Party in the Ústí nad Labem Region are up in arms
over the withdrawal of Tomáš Tožička as a candidate for Senate
elections, Novinky.cz reported. Mr. Tožička quit the Pirates’ ticket at
the request of the party’s leadership after an image came to light that
he had posted on social media 11 years ago featuring a swastika imposed on
the Star of David on the Israeli flag and the words Fascist State.
The leaders of the Pirate Party’s Ústí nad Labem branch passed a resolution saying they backed Mr. Tožička remaining a candidate in a Senate by-election. However, national party chairman Ivan Bartoš said a decision had been made on the matter.
More than 40 people are waiting for the results of tests for the Covid-19
virus in the Czech Republic, the Czech News Agency reported. The Ústí nad
Labem Region in the north of the country is believed to have the highest
number of people under observation pending the outcome of coronavirus tests
with 14. Two of the five cases of Covid-19 detected in the Czech Republic
to date were in Ústí nad Labem.
Some regions are not releasing numbers of people waiting for test results and say they will only issue statements if actual cases are discovered.
A number of hospitals and old folks’ homes in the Czech Republic have barred visitors in view of the coronavirus situation.
The authors of a new survey say the image of Czechs as a nation of climate
change sceptics no longer applies. Some 84 percent of respondents in a
survey by the STEM polling agency agreed with the statement that climate
change caused by mankind threatens the future. The poll released on Tuesday
also suggests that nine out of 10 Czechs believe that without a reduction
in emissions it will not be possible to save the countryside from drought
and the death of forests.
STEM’s Nikola Hořejš said Czechs now view climate change as an urgent issue, in large part because of the damage that drought has done to the country’s landscape.
Computers linked to the network of the Prague Castle Administration have
been hacked by actors outside the Czech Republic, Mladá fronta Dnes
reported on Tuesday. The newspaper’s IT experts said that data from
computers at the seat of President Miloš Zeman had been leaking to IP
addresses abroad for at least a number of months. However it is not clear
what kind of information the hackers may have acquired.
The network also involves the president’s residence at Laný near Prague. Mr. Zeman’s spokesperson has refused to comment on the case, which is being investigated by the Office for the Protection of Personal Data.
Prague City Council has agreed on proposals regulating short-term letting,
most often mediated by Airbnb, obliging them to provide data on rented
flats, their owners and middlemen.
Prague councilors want anyone who arranges short-term accommodation via online platforms to provide relevant information to the Municipal Trades Licensing Office upon request.
A property owner not having registered an appropriate a Trade Licence may be liable to a fine of up to CZK 1 million.
For the proposals to become law, Parliament would need to amendments certain acts that would for example allow municipalities to use data to enforce the payment of residence fees.
The number of confirmed cases of the new coronavirus in the Czech Republic
has risen to five, the country’s health minister said on Tuesday. The
first three, reported on Sunday, involved two Czechs who had been in
northern Italy and an American studying in Milan.
A young Ecuadoran woman who was travelling with the American student has now tested positive after being retested. The fifth patient is a woman from Ústí nad Labem, northern Bohemia, who had returned from Italy on Friday.
The National Security Council is meeting again on Wednesday after having convened on Monday, when ministers announced restrictions on flights to South Korea and barred spectators at the upcoming World Cup biathlon.
The Czech government is looking to ban flights from northern Italy, pending consultation with the European Commission. The interior minister is pushing to declare a State of Emergency.
The Prague High Public Prosecutor’s Office has filed indictments against
five people and two institutions over the alleged abuse of sports
The defendants are likely former Football Association chairman Miroslav Pelta, Czech Sport Union head Miroslav Jansta and their organizations, as well as former Ministry of Education officials.