Daily news summary News of Radio Prague

04-05-2003

Czech Republic considers introduction of registration cards

Czech hygiene officers and representatives of the Health, Interior, Foreign and Industry Ministries are finalising the preparation of registration cards that passengers flying to the Czech Republic would be asked to fill out should an epidemic of the pneumonia-like disease SARS hit Europe. Prague's chief hygiene officer Vladimir Polanecky has said that in order to isolate persons infected with SARS it is necessary to know whom they have been in touch with. Passengers would hand in the registration cards to immigration officers, who would store them for twenty days. Afterwards the cards would be shredded.

Top officials' positions on possible stationing of US troops differ

Deputy Prime Minister and chairman of the junior coalition partner, the Freedom Union Petr Mares said on Sunday that he would on principle approve of possible stationing of US army units in the Czech Republic. Speaking in a televised debate Mr Mares said he would not object to stationing allied units on Czech territory if it were in harmony with the Czech Republic's commitments as a NATO member and if it improved the country's defence ability. According to speculation, the United States is considering moving its troops from Germany eastwards. While the possibility of the deployment of US troops is accepted positively in Poland, Czech politicians' positions on the issue differ.

President Vaclav Klaus has adopted a reserved stance and pointed to a parallel with the presence of the Soviet troops in Czechoslovakia after it was occupied by the former Warsaw pact armies in 1968. Reacting to President Klaus's statement Foreign Minister Cyril Svoboda said that American troops could be stationed in the Czech Republic.

Tvrdik to visit Czech anti-chemical experts and doctors in Kuwait

Defence Minister Jaroslav Tvrdik is travelling to Kuwait on Monday to visit the Czech-Slovak NBC unit stationed at Camp Doha. On Tuesday Minister Tvrdik is to travel to the Iraqi city of Basra where a Czech military field hospital is being built. On Wednesday Mr Tvrdik will meet Kuwaiti officials. Czech anti-chemical experts have been deployed in the region as part of the US-led Enduring Freedom operation. The Czech military field hospital was expected to begin full service on Tuesday but construction has been delayed due to various complications.

Temelin nuclear plant operates at full power for first time

For the first time, both units of the Temelin nuclear power plant started operating at full power on Saturday, two and a half years after the opening of the plant, which has been the object of protests and hunger strikes. Both the reactor's 1,000-megawatt units are to run at full power for a trial period before they are giving a passing grade and licenced for commercial electrical production. Although given a green light by international and Czech atomic power experts, the plant has been plagued by technical problems and delays since its first unit began operating in October 2000. The technical faults and Temelin's proximity to the Austrian and German borders have stirred years of protests in those countries. For nearly three years, Temelin protesters have blocked roads at the Czech-Austrian border, staged hunger strikes, threatening to block the Czech Republic's accession to the European Union in 2004.

Bohdan Ulihrach vows to fight on after receiving two-year ban

Czech tennis professional Bohdan Ulihrach, who on Friday received a two-year doping ban and was fined over 43,000 dollars, has vowed to fight on. Ulihrach tested positive for the banned anabolic steroid nandrolone in October last year during an ATP event in Moscow. He then requested an independent Tennis Anti-Doping Program tribunal to look into the matter and they ruled he had committed an offence. As Bohdan Ulihrach had voluntarily stopped playing on the ATP tour in October after first testing positive, the two-year ban will expire in October next year. Ulihrach said on Sunday that the verdict was a "shock". Ulihrach's coach, Martin Nekola said that they would appeal against the verdict. Bohdan Ulihrach has won three singles titles and has been in the top 100 of the world for seven years, winning over 3 million dollars in total prize money.

Weather

Monday should be a hot and sunny day with daytime temperatures reaching highs of 28 degrees Celsius.

04-05-2003