Daily news summary News of Radio Prague

07-08-2003

Klaus recommends Pejchal to Constitutional Court for second time

President Vaclav Klaus announced on Thursday he was once again recommending lawyer Ales Pejchal to become a judge of the Constitutional Court. Mr Pejchal, whose candidacy was rejected by the Senate, was recommended only one day after the Senate also rejected three of four other candidates proposed by President Klaus. Only Civic Democrat senator Dagmar Lastovecka was successful in Wednesday's Senate vote. The other candidates, lawyers Vladimir Balas, Vaclav Pavlicek, and Klara Vesela-Samkova, did not receive a majority approval. Mr Pejchal was rejected by the Senate in July.

Out of nine candidates for Constitutional Court judges, the Senate has so far approved only five. Two of the five, Vojen Guettler and Pavel Hollaender, had been Constitutional Court judges in the previous term already. The other three approved judges come from parliament. They are former Justice Minister and ex-senator Pavel Rychetsky, former senator Dagmar Lastovecka and former MP Miloslav Vyborny.

Klaus starts rejecting requests for pardon

President Vaclav Klaus has started sending the first letters announcing his rejection of requests for pardon, the Presidential Office press department said on Thursday. The Presidential Office has received over 400 requests for pardon, and Mr Klaus has so far settled dozens of them. Vaclav Klaus, elected president in February this year, has radically changed the method of decision-making on pardons. While his predecessor Vaclav Havel, often criticised for granting too many pardons, had consulted the Justice Ministry on them, and in some cases the Justice Ministry even decided itself, Mr Klaus says he wants to decide himself as the pardon is not a legal act correcting a court decision but a special act by the head of state.

Czechs on Russian volcano rescued

The Russian Emergency Situations Ministry has said that rescuers led members of an ill-fated Czech climbing expedition to safety on Thursday after one man died on a volcano on the eastern Kamchatka Peninsula. The nineteen remaining members of the Czech group were recovering after a three-day ordeal on the Klyuchevskoi volcano. The rescuers climbed the volcano again to retrieve the body of a 44-year-old man who died after he was hit on the head by a falling rock last Monday. The Czech group was unable to move the fatally injured man and waited in thick fog for help.

Ex-president Havel only foreigner awarded Canada Order this year

The former Czech president Vaclav Havel has been awarded the Canada Order, the supreme Canadian distinction, as the only foreigner among 109 winners this year, Canada's Governor General Adrienne Clarkson says on her website. The information was confirmed for the CTK news agency by Mr Havel's office and the Canadian Embassy in Prague. Ms Clarkson, who is Canada's de facto Head of State representing the British Queen Elizabeth II, plans to hand over the decorations late this year.

Pakistani murder suspect requests extradition to Germany

Pakistani citizen Mansur Anwar stated in Prague City Court on Thursday that he would like to be extradited to Germany to face charges. He is suspected of helping a friend to kill his wife and one of her friends. The Justice Ministry is now deciding on the extradition of Mr Anwar, who says he is innocent, in a shortened hearing procedure. If Mr Anwar is convicted, it would be advantageous for him to be extradited to Germany, as the pre-trial detention there could be deducted from his prison sentence. Mr Anwar was arrested this April in the Prague district of Brevnov on the basis of an international warrant.

Weather

Friday should be bright and sunny with temperatures rising to 32 degrees Celsius.

07-08-2003