Daily news summary News of Radio Prague

06-01-2004

Doctors, dentists, pharmacists hold one-hour protest over cuts

Some 22,000 doctors who treat outpatients, dentists and pharmacists held a symbolic one-hour strike on Tuesday intended to draw attention to their sector as the government makes spending cuts. However, many chemists and doctors' surgeries remained open during the protest, which lasted from 11 am to noon. Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla's cabinet has succeeded in pushing through a radical financial reform package aimed at reducing a record budget deficit.

Vaclav Havel cuts short trip to Asia due to breathing difficulties

Former Czech president Vaclav Havel has had to cut short a three-week tour of Asia after experiencing breathing difficulties, a spokesperson said on Tuesday. The news came a day after he had received India's highest honour, the Mahatma Gandhi Peace Prize. Mr Havel, who is 67, has had breathing problems since undergoing lung surgery in 1996. He has been seriously ill several times.

Czech crown hits all-time high against US dollar

The Czech crown hit an all-time high against the US dollar when it reached 25.27 to the dollar on Tuesday afternoon. The record exchange rate followed weakening of the US currency on international markets.

Rail worker repairing cold-damaged tracks killed by train

A rail worker was killed on Tuesday when he was hit by a train while working on tracks damaged by freezing weather. The accident occurred near Roudnice in central Bohemia. A spokesman for Czech Rail said the cold weather had caused the greatest difficulties on lines in that region. Some trains have been delayed for hours and some services cancelled.

After Christmas bonanza 94% of Czechs own mobile phone, says daily

After around 300,000 mobile telephones were sold over the Christmas period, 94 percent of Czechs now own a mobile, the newspaper Mlada fronta Dnes reported on Tuesday. Many of the phones bought over Christmas were new models capable of sending multi-media messages, mobile operators said.

Another property claim by aristocrat Kinsky rejected by court

A court in Litomerice on Tuesday rejected a claim by Franz Ulrich Kinsky to property in the district confiscated after World War II. It is the fourth time courts in the Usti nad Labem region have ruled against the aristocrat, who has filed a total of 157 lawsuits against the Czech state. Most of the property Mr Kinsky is seeking belonged to his father, an alleged Nazi sympathiser who died before the war. However, Mr Kinsky says the property belonged to him, not his father, and the confiscation was therefore illegal.

Skier Neummanova wins second World Cup race in row since comeback

The Czech cross-country skier Katerina Neumannova has won her second World Cup race in a row since returning to the tracks after having a child in the summer. Ms Neumannova's latest victory was in the 7.5 kilometre double pursuit race at the Swedish resort of Falun.

Weather

Wednesday should be another cold day in the Czech Republic, with temperatures ranging from minus 6 to minus 2 degrees Celsius. It should be cloudy with snow in some parts of the country.

06-01-2004