Daily news summary News of Radio Prague

31-08-2003

Pavel Tigrid dies in Paris

The former Czech culture minister, writer, journalist and dissident in exile Pavel Tigrid has died in Paris at the ago of 85. The former Czech president Vaclav Havel said he had received the news with a heavy heart, describing Mr. Tigrid as a good and brave man who had left behind a precious legacy. Culture minister Pavel Dostal described him as a legend of Czech journalism. Pavel Tigrid emigrated from his homeland twice: once during the Nazi occupation and again after the communists took power in 1948. During the war he worked as a journalist for the London based Czechoslovak government in exile, and in later years he worked for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. He returned to Czechoslovakia after the fall of communism in 1989.

EU urges Czech Republic to speed up agricultural reform

EU experts say the Czech agricultural sphere is lagging behind in preparations for EU membership. Unnamed sources at the European Commission have said that an EU progress report, to be published in the autumn, will emphasize the need to speed up structural changes in the last months leading up to EU membership. The commission's experts warn that if the Czech Republic fails to make up for the lost time in this field it could have a serious effect both on the country's farmers and on consumers. The field of veterinary legislation in particular has been found seriously lacking.

Half of all Czech schools to join strike action

More than half of all primary and secondary schools in the country intend to join the one day token strike in protest of low wages on Monday. The Education Ministry said on Friday that it could make no more concessions, and that it had done its utmost for teachers within the government proposed cuts in spending. The Finance Minister Bohuslav Sobotka likewise confirmed that there could be no question of allotting extra finances for teachers' pay. Tax officials, employees of land registry and social welfare offices also intend to join the one day protest strike. Meanwhile, the leaders of the governing coalition parties are to meet with officials of the Bohemian and Moravian Confederation of Trade Unions on Monday to discuss the public finance reform and trade unions' suggestions for its modification. The Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla has warned trade unions however not to expect any major concessions.

Weather:

Monday should be partly cloudy to overcast with scattered showers and day temperatures between 13 and 17 degrees Celsius.

31-08-2003