No Czechs are reported to have been among the victims of the terrorist attacks in Thailand, the Czech Foreign Ministry said on Friday. According to spokeswoman Irena Valentova the ministry has information about 97 nationals currently in Thailand, but their number could be higher since not all travellers register with the ministry’s travel data base. A travel warning for Thailand remains in place and the ministry has advised tourists to exercise heightened caution.
Volkswagen Group has moved to dispel security concerns regarding nearly a hundred million cars sold in the past twenty years, including Skodas. Researchers from Birmingham University have warned that the keyless entry security system in nearly a hundred million Volkswagen group cars is vulnerable to a simple hack that could grant entry in under a minute. A spokesperson for Volkswagen Group said on Friday that while this is the case, the procedure would not allow thieves to start the car and drive off. Among the cars that are deemed vulnerable are VW, Audi, Seat a Skoda makes sold after 1995.
The police have shelved an investigation into an attempt to blackmail the Czech government with the threat of spreading the Ebola virus in the country if the government failed to pay the blackmailer one million euros. The incident happened in 2014 at the time of an Ebola epidemic in Africa. According to Jaroslav Ibehej, spokesperson for the National Centre for Combatting Organized Crime, the police did not find enough evidence on the case to prosecute. If the blackmailer had been charged and convicted they would have faced up to 12 years in prison.
South Moravia is fighting a hepatitis epidemic, with heightened sanitary measures in hospitals, institutions and public places. The health authorities report 151 cases of Hepatitis A since the beginning of the year, the highest incidence of the infectious disease in 25 years. Fifteen cases have been reported in the past week alone. 600 people were vaccinated. Heightened sanitary measures are in place in hospitals, on trams and buses, in churches and other places where people gather.
The Czech Hygiene Office has issued a health warning regarding smoked salmon sold in the food chain Albert. In performing random tests, the food inspection authorities detected the presence of a parasite –specifically the roundworm Anisakis simplex –which may cause stomach pain and nausea in humans. The bio product by the firm Nekton is no longer on the shelves but consumers who may still have the product at home have been warned against consuming it.
Sichuan Airlines is launching a direct air-link between Prague and Chengdu in Southwest China on Friday. The first flight from Chengdu is due to arrive in Prague shortly after 3pm and the return flight is scheduled for 7 pm today. The flight should last for roughly nine hours. The Chengdu-based carrier will operate its Airbus A330 on the Prague service, with flights every Tuesday and Friday. It will be the third direct air-link between the Czech Republic and China.
A Czech hiker died in an accident in the Austrian Alps, the news site novinky.cz reported on Friday citing Austrian police courses. The 41-year-old man, who was on holiday with his wife and two sons, slipped on wet ground and fell down a steep slope. He was airlifted to hospital in Schwarzach in critical condition and died several hours later.
Czech judo competitor Lukáš Krpálek has won the Czech Republic’s first gold medal at the Rio Olympics. In the under 100 kilogramme category, he beat the world number one Elmar Gasimov from Azerbaijan with one ippon. Krpálek, rated fourth in the world, has been seen as a medal chance for his country before the start of the games. The 25-year-old dedicated his medal to his newly born son, Antonín, and his former judo colleague Alexander Jurečka who died a year ago in a swimming accident.
In tennis, the Czech Republic has a guaranteed medal in the women’s doubles competition at Rio after both pairings of Lucie Šafářová and Barbora Strýcová and Andrea Hlaváčková and Lucie Hradecká got through to the semi-finals. Šafářová and Strýcová came back from one set down and 0:3 in the second set against Italians Errani and Vinci to finally come through 4:6; 6:4; 6:4. Hlaváčková and Hradecká had a much easier path to a possible medal beating Russians Kasatikina and Kuznetskova.
The cold spell is breaking temperature records at monitoring stations around the country, the ctk news agency reported. Ten monitoring stations reported record low temperatures for August 12th on Friday with the lowest temperature recorded in Prerov, at just 5.4 degrees Celsius. The previous record at this monitoring station was 5.8 dating back to 1908. Prague’s Klementinum, the oldest monitoring station in the country, reported the lowest temperature for August 11 since 1867 – at just ten degrees Celsius.