The Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat in its Sunday edition appreciates the Czech Government's apology to Sudeten German antifascists describing it as an important example for Europe. The daily writes that the Czech government has made a small but right step in this matter, adding that such examples are needed in Europe as a similar dispute still burdens Polish-German relations. The Finnish paper also says the primary task of European political leaders in not to demand acknowledgment or compensation in international disputes but help accurate information to come to light.
A part of the entrance hall of Mustek station of Prague metro was flooded on Sunday afternoon after a water pipe burst in the vicinity. As water was running down the escalators police closed the northern entrance to the station. The Prague Water Supply and Sewerage Company said the water was coming from the same spot where a large cavity formed underneath the roadway in Vodickova Street in January.
The Czech Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek has said that the removal from
office of the Supreme State Attorney Marie Benesova now would not be a
prudent political decision as the public would connect it with case of the
Qatari Prince Hamid Adbul Sani who was extradited to Qatar after being
sentenced by a Prague court for sex with underage girls. The case was a
culmination of a long-standing dispute between the Supreme State Attorney
and Justice Minister Pavel Nemec who has demanded her removal from office.
Earlier this week, Justice Minister Pavel Nemec called on Ms Benesova to resign over their latest disagreement, but Ms Benesova refused to do so. Saturday's edition of the daily Pravo wrote that a likely candidate to replace Marie Benesova was Jiri Vyvadil, a judge of the Supreme Administrative Court. Prime Minister Paroubek dismissed the speculation.
The chairman of the right-of-centre opposition Civic Democratic Party Mirek Topolanek has announced he will probably run for a parliament seat in the Prague constituency in the general elections scheduled for mid-next year. The Prime Minister and probable election leader of the Social Democrats Jiri Paroubek would like the Deputy Prime Minister for Economy Martin Jahn to lead the party's Prague ticket.
The 6th Annual Czech-Slovak Rockfest USA music festival has started in Yorkville, Illinois. During the weekend, visitors from all around the United States will be able to see the Czech and Slovak singers and musicians Michal David, Michal Prokop, Lubos Andrst, Jan Hruby and the bands Horkyze Slize, Vidiek, Stari psi, Voiceband and also three US-based bands: Doggybag, the C.I.A. from Chicago and the Slovak-American band from Minnesota Five Ounces. The popular Czech band Kabat refused to appear at Rockfest after the wife of one of the musicians was not granted a US visa.
Jiri Vyvadil, a judge of the Supreme Administrative Court, is to become
the deputy justice minister as of the beginning of September, Prime
Minister Jiri Paroubek said through his spokeswoman on Saturday. The Prime
Minister was reacting to speculation in Saturday's edition of the daily
Pravo which said Mr Vyvadil was going to replace the Supreme State
Attorney Marie Benesova.
Earlier this week, Justice Minister Pavel Nemec called on Ms Benesova to resign over their dispute over the extradition of the Qatari Prince Hamid bin Abdul Sani, who was sentenced for sex with underage girls in the Czech Republic, but Ms Benesova refused to do so. On Monday the Supreme Court complied with an earlier request by Justice Minister Pavel Nemec allowing Mr Sani to be tried at home, which the Supreme State Attorney Marie Benesova had sharply criticised.
Saturday's edition of the daily Pravo writes that an agency recruiting Czech men to work as security guards in Iraq is run by a man sentenced for fraud. The agency based in the town of Otrokovice in South Moravia promises the men to be paid 80 dollars per hour in Iraq but charges fees for mediation and training. According to the daily the Czech Embassy in Baghdad has no information about a Czech security agency operating in Iraq and the daily adds that the man behind the recruiting agency, Vladimir Hunek, was sentenced for fraud earlier this year. At present, there are some 30 mercenaries of Czech origin in Iraq working for foreign agencies. They are mostly former soldiers from special units or the French Foreign Legion.
A recent poll by the SC&C polling agency suggests that around 77 percent Czechs believe President Vaclav Klaus is doing well in his office, while some 19 percent have a fairly negative view of his performance and 4 percent view him negatively. When the respondents were asked to assess the president's concrete steps, Mr Klaus received an average rating, the poll found. He was given a positive rating for his performance in domestic politics, representation abroad, relationship to the public, defence of the Czech Republic in Europe and granting of pardons and awarding honours.
In related news, a representative of the country's Green Party called the Interior Ministry's bill "unconstitutional" on Friday, because it excludes raves from other apolitical gatherings and lists special conditions under which permission for such events can be obtained. The Green Party has said it is preparing its own proposal it would like to present to the government.
A legal team from the right-of-centre, opposition Civic Democrats is planning to put forward a constitutional complaint regarding the recent case of a Qatari royal extradited from Prague to Qatar. Qatari prince Hamid bin Abdal Sani was found guilty of having sex with underage girls in the Czech Republic and sentenced to 2.5 years in prison. But, following a Supreme Court ruling backing a decision by the Justice Minister allowing extradition, Mr Sani was released and returned to Qatar earlier this week, to face prosecution at home. Civic Democrat Jiri Pospisil has made clear he would like the Constitutional Court to investigate sections in the penal code, compared with the Charter of Fundamental Freedoms and Rights.