Daily news summary News

20-03-2005

Gross refuses to react to pressure from Christian Democrats

Prime Minister Stanislav Gross has refused to react to a threat by the Christian Democrats to push for early elections and leave the governing coalition if Mr Gross is not replaced at a Social Democrats party conference next weekend. Christian Democrat chairman Miroslav Kalousek has been calling for Mr Gross's resignation since the prime minister and his wife became involved in a financial scandal.

Ad agency offers Czechs chance to appear on billboards critical of PM

Meanwhile, a Prague advertising agency is offering Czechs the chance to appear on billboards critical of the prime minister, at a special cut-price rate, the newspaper Nedelni Svet reported on Sunday. For 3,000 Czech crowns (or around 130 US dollars) people can have their own photo on the billboards, beside the slogan "I'm ashamed of my prime minister". The billboards are something of a parody of Social Democrat pre-election adverts from last year featuring Mr Gross.

No shortage of judges, says Klaus

President Vaclav Klaus has said the Czech Republic does not have a shortage of judges, adding that the country had the highest number per citizen of any OECD country. Mr Klaus's remarks follow controversy over his refusal to appoint a number of judges because they were under the age of 30. Speaking on Czech Radio on Saturday, the president said the real problem was the placement of judges in different parts of the country and the way the courts were organized.

Protestors mark second anniversary of start of US-led war against Iraq

Around 200 people have held a demonstration in Prague on the second anniversary of the beginning of the United States-led war against Iraq. The demonstrators compared the US presence in Iraq to the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, and called on President George Bush to withdraw US troops from the country.

Main prizes go to Tata Bojs, Barta, Langerova at Czech music awards

The rock group Tata Bojs were named band of the year at the Czech music industry's annual Andel (Angel) awards ceremony on Saturday night. Male singer of the year was Dan Barta, while the female singer of the year award went to Aneta Langerova, the winner of a television talent contest. The late Zuzana Nazarova was inducted into the Czech music hall of fame at the ceremony in Ostrava.

Koller out for Finland game

Giant forward Jan Koller is likely to miss the first of two upcoming World Cup qualifying matches against Finland and Andorra. Koller, the second highest goal scorer in the history of Czech international football, sustained a muscle injury during an appearance for his club Borussia Dortmund.

Weather

The next few days should see continued sunny spells around the country, with temperatures rising to around 18 degrees Celsius in the middle of the week.

20-03-2005