Czech Radio will invest 35 million crowns to improve security at its main headquarters in Prague and regional branches around the country. The decision was made in the wake of the January attack on the satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo in Paris. After the incident intelligence services said there were some 20 dormant terrorist cells in Europe that could strike at any time. The security measures will involve tighter security at entrances, a better camera system, more efficient control of movement on the premises and better security in studios and key work places. The improved security system should be in place within three years.
This week’s edition of the Sunday Music Show focuses on an up-and-coming Czech band called Wild Tides. The surf-punk trio from Prague is the fresh winner of Czeching, a competition for promising Czech musicians organized by Czech Radio. Its aim is to launch one talented Czech band a year onto the world. More
Regular Czech Radio interviews with the Czech president will most likely be discontinued. The station is refusing to carry on with the present live format following a scandal surrounding foul language uttered by President Miloš Zeman in the programme’s most recent edition. The broadcaster says it will only pre-tape the show – an idea rejected by the president. More
Regular live radio interviews with President Miloš Zeman will be most likely discontinued after Czech Radio CEO Peter Duhan said the programme’s future editions would have to be pre-recorded, an idea previously rejected by the president. Mr Zeman came under fire over vulgar remarks he delivered in November’s edition of the programme; Czech Radio’s supervising board later said the public broadcaster breached the law by airing the interview. Mr Zeman’s spokesman said on Monday the president’s office would find a way to make sure listeners still have an opportunity to hear the head of state in a live radio interview. A live radio interview with then president Václav Havel was first broadcast in 1990, and continued until 1998. Czech Radio revived the programme last year, and has since broadcast the interviews every three months.
President says recommendation of Czech Radio Council does not concern him
President Miloš Zeman said the recommendation of the Council for Czech Radio not to broadcast further live interviews with him after he used vulgar language on air did not concern him. Speaking to journalists during his visit to Tajikistan on Thursday, Mr Zeman said it was up to Czech Radio’s management to deal with the situation. The recommendation came in reaction to a recent scandalous broadcast in which President Miloš Zeman used a number of vulgar expressions. According to the Council, both the law and the broadcaster's ethical codex were breached; at the same time, the council conceded that surprise had played a strong role in the interviewer’s mild reaction to the language used.
Veteran conductor of the Czech Radio Orchestra, Vladimír Válek, and radio drama director Hana Kofránková have been inducted in the Prix Bohemia Festival’s Hall of Fame. Reporter Jan Macháček received the Jiřího Ješ award and Pavla Tomicová received a Thalia for best performance in a radio play. The international festival continues until Thursday.
The Council for Czech Radio has recommended the station should no longer broadcast live the long-running programme Interviews from Lány, reacting to a recent scandalous broadcast in which President Miloš Zeman used vulgar language on the air. According to the Council, both the law and the broadcaster's ethical codex were breached; at the same time, the council conceded that surprise had played a strong role. The head of Czech Radio, Peter Duhan, said that the situation had been “impossible to predict” and made clear that cutting off the president, without warning, had not been an option under the circumstances. He indicated that in the future if a similar situation arose, the station would react immediately.
Experts from the Institute of the Czech Language of the Academy of Sciences have weighed in on the president’s use of vulgarisms in an interview, with some suggesting Mr Zeman opted for the lewdest possible translation of the name of the political band Pussy Riot. Petr Kaderka, the head of the linguistics department at the Institute of the Czech Language, pointed out that a well-known dictionary's first listing was a far tamer definition of the word meaning “cat”. The head of the institute, Karel Oliva, expressed the view that a public apology by the president was in order, the Czech News Agency reported. Prague Castle has downplayed the incident: spokesman Jiří Ovčáček suggested the president had used “explosive” terminology to intentionally lower himself to the level of his political opponents.
Monday saw further reaction to the president’s live broadcast a day earlier, in which he used unusually vulgar terminology to explain the name of activist group Pussy Riot, who he heavily criticised. Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka said in a message that Mr Zeman was hurting the reputation of his office, and was setting a very poor example both at home and abroad. The head of TOP 09, Karel Schwarzenberg, who was mentioned in the broadcast by the president, sent a barb of his own against Mr Zeman on Monday, suggesting that worse than bad language was the president’s approach to China on a recent visit. Sunday’s programme, the only time that a Czech head-of-state has used such language in a live interview, will be assessed by the Council for Radio and Television Broadcasting.
Former finance minister Miroslav Kalousek on Monday criticised Czech President Miloš Zeman for vulgar language used by the head-of-state in a live programme broadcast on Sunday, Interviews from Lány. In the programme, broadcast by Czech Radio, the president explained – in explicit terms – the name of Pussy Riot, the activist group whose members were jailed in Russia, whom he likened to “deviants”. Mr Kalousek suggested that in his language the head-of-state was marring a legacy founded by Czechoslovakia’s first president, T.G. Masaryk and continued by post-1989 president Václav Havel. In the past, Mr Kalousek himself has not shied away from strong language on the Czech political scene.