The Prague Spring Music Festival, which is taking place online due to the
coronavirus pandemic, will stream Adam Plachetka's concert from
Prague's Rudolfinum on Monday night, at which he will perform Franz
Schubert's Winter Journey. The successful Czech opera singer will be
accompanied on the piano by David Švec. Plachetka, who made his debut at
the Prague National Theatre fifteen years ago, will appear at the Prague
Spring Music Festival for the tenth time.
All of the Prague Spring Music Festival concerts are being streamed live on the festival’s website. All of the concerts should also be available for catch-up, or delayed streaming for a period of 30 days.
The Supreme Audit Office has issued a report criticizing the Defence
Ministry for poor planning and mismanagement of finances relating to
maintenance of army equipment.
It says that in 2016 to 2018, the Ministry of Defence invested 2.8 billion crowns in new equipment and another 1.3 billion crowns were spent on repairs, maintenance and spare parts.
Nevertheless, some of the equipment was not operational when needed or was grounded for longer periods. Inspections also revealed a dependence on suppliers or overpriced repairs.
The writer and one-time spokesperson for Charter 77 Zdena Tominová has
died at the age of 79. Her philosopher husband Julius Tomin organised
underground seminars in Prague and the family faced such pressure from the
authorities in communist Czechoslovakia that in 1980 they moved to the
United Kingdom, where one of Tominová’s activities was working for the
She drew on her family’s experiences in their native country in the writing of Enemies of the State, a film released in the UK in the early 1980s.
A major loosening of restrictions aimed at containing Covid-19 took place
in the Czech Republic on Monday. In the final stage of a government roadmap
to restart aspects of the economy, hotels and the indoors premises of
restaurants and cafés have been allowed to reopen for the first time since
Hundreds of thousands of elementary school children have been allowed to return; they will be taught in small groups and attendance is at parents’ discretion.
Face masks are now only required in enclosed spaces or in close proximity to others. Castles and chateaus are launching their summer seasons and swimming pools have also been allowed to reopen.
Some restrictions aimed at curbing the coronavirus will remain in place in
Karviná in the Moravian Silesian Region on Monday, when they are eased
elsewhere. It will not be possible to visit health facilities in the area
or to have gatherings of over 100 people, officials said, after over 200
cases of the coronavirus were linked to an outbreak at Darkov mine.
The restrictions are expected to be kept in place in Karviná for at least another two weeks. Over 2,000 people have been tested for Covid-19 in the area since the local outbreak began.
The Czech government is not planning to create a mechanism for the
compensation of firms over the restrictions imposed to contain Covid-19,
the minister of justice, Marie Benešová, said on TV Prima on Sunday. She
said that if companies had suffered losses because of the measures they
could take the matter to the courts.
The head of the Pirate Party’s deputies group, Jakub Michálek, criticised this stance, saying the government was relying on firms being reluctant to take legal action.
Mrs. Benešová said the cabinet had supported enterprises in a number of ways, including a short-time work scheme (commonly known as kursarbeit) and the deferral of levies.
The minister of health, Adam Vojtěch, says the new form of a national
smart quarantine programme focused on Covid-19 will cost around CZK 200
million this year. The Ministry of Health is due to take over the project
on Monday. The funding will go toward IT and 150 specialised staff deployed
around the country, Mr. Vojtěch said on Czech Television on Sunday.
The minister said that “Smart Quarantine 2.0” would be more robust than the current form of the scheme, which was created quickly in response to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in the Czech Republic.
The system will be able to track data on 400 infected persons a day but could be expanded to handle as many as 1,000. Involvement will remain voluntary.
The Czech soccer first division got underway again on Saturday evening with
a game in which Teplice beat Liberec 2:0 at home. That match was an
unplayed round from before the league was forced to halt over the
coronavirus epidemic in early March. The next full round will take place on
Tuesday and Wednesday.
Saturday’s game was played with no fans in the stadium for public health reasons. Teplice livened up the atmosphere with the sound of fans cheering relayed over their stadium’s PA system.
President Miloš Zeman has criticised an article by the Czech foreign
minister, Tomáš Petříček, and two of his predecessors, Lubomír
Zaorálek and Karel Schwarzenberg, in which they condemn Israeli plans to
annex Jewish settlements on the West Bank of the Jordan. In a piece in the
newspaper Právo on Saturday the three said that Israel’s proposal would
contravene international law.
Mr. Zeman said that the article undermined relations between the Czech Republic and Israel.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš also criticized Mr. Petříček and Mr. Lubomír Zaorálek, who is currently Czech arts minister. Mr. Babiš said it was unacceptable for individual cabinet members to make statements on such an important foreign policy issue.
The Czech Republic is gearing up for Monday’s final stage of a government
plan to ease restrictions imposed to contain the coronavirus pandemic.
Restaurants, cafés and hotels will be able to reopen their entire premises
and events attended by up to 300 people will be permissible.
Many elementary school children will be allowed to return, at parents’ discretion and dependent on schools’ ability to serve smaller groups. In addition face masks will only have to be worn in enclosed spaces and in close proximity to others.
It will also be possible to visit most hospitals and care homes and the country’s castles while chateaus will launch their new season, two months later than usual. Hygiene requirements will be in place at all of the referred to facilities. Country gearing up for Monday’s final stage of roadmap to ease restrictions