The Czech Republic will step up controls on international trains and roads in the border areas in connection with the ongoing migrant crisis. Addressing a special session of the lower house of Parliament on Thursday, Interior Minister Milan Chovanec assured deputies that measures were being taken to curb the flow of migrants via the so-called “Balkans route”. Migrants arriving in Greece pass through Macedonia and Serbia before crossing the Hungarian border into Schengen territory. An estimated 50 thousand migrants are believed to have used the route this year alone.
Czech President Miloš Zeman is against the refugee quotas proposed by the European Commission. In his speech in the Chamber of Deputies on Friday, Mr Zeman said he was resolutely against the prepared EU immigration quotas, adding that the Czech Republic should help refugees in their home countries or in the neighbouring region. He suggested that the Czech Republic could send a field hospital to Jordan to help Syrian refugees.
Prague governing coalition, the ANO Party, the Social Democrats and the three-way coalition of Greens, Christian Democrats and Mayors and Independents, wants to approve a blanket ban on gambling in the Czech capital, Prague Mayor Adriana Krnáčová said on Friday. The parties have agreed to approve the ban in September, although it is not yet clear when the new regulation will come in force. The amendment will see the closure of the city’s gambling venues, with the exception of hotel casinos. Several Prague districts have already introduced zero tolerance to gambling on their territories.
The ongoing migration crisis should be solved by reaching an agreement with the African states on the return of refugees who were not granted asylum in Europe, the Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka said after meeting with his British counterpart David Cameron in Bratislava on Friday. He also said Mr Cameron shared his views on the matter. The Czech Prime Minister attended a meeting of prime ministers of the Visegrad Countries with the French President Francois Hollande. David Cameron has arrived in the Slovak capital to attend the Globsec international security conference.
Police detained twelve foreigners, including Afghan, Syrian and Gambian nationals, during a raid at Prague’s Main Station on Friday, the police spokesman Jan Daněk told the Czech News Agency. Policemen were checking selected trains in search of illegal immigrants. In the first five months of this year, the Foreign Police uncovered 2418 illegal foreigners in the country, which is 712 more than during the same period last year. The number of people from Kosovo, Syria and Afghanistan who tried to illegally cross the border to Germany has also increased.
The Czech Republic’s foreign debt grew by 40 billion crowns to nearly 2.8 trillion crowns in the first quarter of this year, accounting to 66.8 percent of gross domestic product, the Czech National Bank said on Friday. Year-on-year, the foreign debt was nearly 200 billion crowns higher. External liabilities of the corporate sector accounted for 52.1 percent of the total external deb. The private sector is responsible for almost 68 percent of the long-term external debt, while public sector liabilities account for the rest. Foreign liabilities of the government sector accounted for 21.1 percent of the total external debt.
Police are investigating hoax bomb threats that led to the evacuation of two big shopping centers in Prague on Thursday afternoon. The threats concerned the Černy Most shopping center on the outskirts of the city and the Palladium shopping center in central Prague. Traffic in the vicinity of Palladium was rerouted and subway trains passed through the station without stopping from 2.pm pm until 10pm. No explosives were found.
One time Czech star striker Milan Baroš has signed a two year deal to play for the Synot league football club Mladá Boleslav. The former striker with Liverpool, Lyon, and Galatasary finished with Baník Ostrava at the end of last season. Mladá Boleslav were fourth in the leaguer last time round. Baroš is best known as top scorer in the 2004 European Championships but quickly passed through a series of clubs with his promised early talent failing to deliver and the player often criticized for his diving performances in the penalty area.
The proposed 10 million pound transfer of Czech and Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Čech to Arsenal is close to completion, according to British newspapers. Despite the misgivings of Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, Petr Čech has the green light from Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich and the club’s board to move to the rival Premiere league club, the Daily Telegraph said on Thursday. The 32-year-old Czech has been second choice ‘keeper for Chelsea after Belgian Thibaut Courtois since the start of this season. Čech is said to be keen to stay on in London and continue playing in the Champions League.
The Czech markswoman Kateřina Emmons has announced the end of her career. The 31-year-old Olympic champion and holder of several medals from European and World Championships is currently expecting her third child with her husband Matthew Emmons, who is also one of the world’s leading marksmen. Emmons claimed her first Olympic medal in Athens in 2004, finishing second in women’s air rifle. She claimed her Olympic gold in Beijing in 2008 in the same event, adding the silver medal in women’s three-position 50 metre rifle.
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