Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka repeated his objections to EU sanctions against Russia. Speaking at the meeting of the central executive committee of the Social Democratic Party on Saturday, Mr Sobotka said that toughening economic sanctions against Russia won’t change its attitude towards Ukraine. The prime minister also said it was important that EU takes a unified stance in relation to Russia and prevents the emergence of a new Iron Curtain in the east of Ukraine.
Regional development ministry to provide more funds for Mountain Rescue Service The Ministry for Regional Development on Saturday confirmed additional funds for the Czech Mountain Rescue Service by 15 million crowns to 110 million crowns. The Mountain Rescue Service or Hosrká služba, which on Saturday marks 80 years of its existence, planned to reduce some of its services, due to lack of finances. The rescue service currently employs some 70 people; another 380 rescuers work on a volunteer basis.
The number of Czechs over the age of 85 almost doubled over the past ten years, according to the figures released by the Czech Statistical Office in Friday. The numbers rose from 90,000 in 2003 to 175,000 in 2013, with women accounting for almost three-quarters of this section of the population. The percentage of elderly people is expected to rise. According to demographic projections there will be at least 214,000 people over the age 85 living in the Czech Republic in six years’ time.
A fire of a textile factory in the town of Těchonín in the region of Ústí nad Orlicí is estimated to have caused over 60 million crowns in damages. The massive fire, which is said to be one of the worst this year, started on Friday afternoon. Eleven fire-fighter units were called to the scene to battle the blaze. The cause of the fire seems to have been a technical defect, but investigation is still underway. The textile factory is owned by a German company Kümpers and employs hundreds of local people.
Weather forecasters have warned that flooding may occur in south Moravia on Saturday afternoon as heavy rainfall could cause rivers to rise. The height of major rivers in the region such as the Dyje and Morava as well as smaller streams could rise to the 2nd degree flood alert. Up to 50 mm of precipitations have been registered overnight in Krušné hory in the north-west of the country.
The new season of the Czech ice hockey Extraliga got underway on Friday, with the defending champions Zlín being beaten 5:2 by newcomers Mladá Boleslav. Třinec, Brno, and Plzeň, who are seen as favourites of the season, have come away with wins from the first round of the games.
Two-time defending champion, the Czech Republic, has lost 3:0 to France in the Davis-Cup semi-finals. In the double match on Saturday, the French pair Richard Gasquet and Jo-Wilfred Tsonga defeated the Czechs Radek Štěpánek and Lukáš Rosol 6:7, 6:4, 7:6, 6:1.