The Czech company Explosia, which produces the plastic explosive Semtex and owns the rights to the trademark, has said it launched legal action to prevent American pop-star Madonna from misusing its most valued and internationally-recognized asset. The pop singer was revealed to have registered a company in Britain called "Semtex Girls Limited". Production of Semtex began in the 1960s but only became widely known in the 1980s as a favourite tool for terrorists because it was virtually undetectable. Because of the threat of global terrorism, the company has added a substance to make it easily detectable and now makes only small amounts of Semtex for use by the army and a number of Czech companies.
Just hours ahead of President Putin's arrival, former Czech president Vaclav Havel and several world-renowned statesmen launched an attack on Mr Putin and his policies in a text published in a Czech newspaper. The group, led by Mr Havel and including former UN Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson and Nobel Prize winner Desmond Tutu, sharply accused Mr Putin of "censorship" of information from Chechnya and called for the world to stop "closing its eyes" to atrocities taking place in Chechnya.
A poll carried out by the CVVM agency suggests that 23 percent of Czechs would vote for the ruling Social Democrats if elections were held tomorrow, 4 percent less than last month. On the other hand, support for the Green party has increased to 6 percent compared to 2.5 percent in January. The opposition Civic Democrats lead the poll with 28.5 percent of public support. The Communists would get some 11.5 percent and the Christian Democrats are supported by 7.5 percent of voters, according to the poll.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has arrived in Prague for his first official visit to the Czech Republic. During his two-day visit, Mr Putin is expected to discuss energy issues as well as economic, cultural and military cooperation with an emphasis on the war against terrorism. His first engagement on Wednesday was meeting with his Czech counterpart President Vaclav Klaus.
Czech fixed-line operator Cesky Telecom, whose majority owner is Spanish phone giant Telefonica, has announced that it will merge with its wholly owned mobile-telephone business, Eurotel. The merged company to be named Telefonica O2 faces increased competition on the converging Czech telecoms market. T-Mobile, owned by Deutsche Telekom, jousts with Eurotel for the top spot among mobile operators and Vodafone is third, following its acquisition of Oskar Mobile from Canada-based TIW last year.
Football goalkeeper Petr Cech was named Czech footballer of the Year on Monday evening when the results of the elite survey were announced during a gala event. The best Czech player is chosen by players and coaches alike, with Cech winning over his nearest rival Borussia Dortmund's Tomas Rosicky by 153 points. In all Cech, who plays for London's Chelsea, received 4,235 votes. Pavel Nedved, of Juventus Turin, came in third.
Russian President Vladimir Putin starts his first official visit to the Czech Republic on Wednesday, with energy issues expected to be high on the agenda of the talks. The two sides are also due to discuss economic, cultural and military cooperation with an emphasis on the war against terrorism. President Putin is expected to arrive in Prague at around 3pm on Wednesday. His first engagement will be a meeting with his Czech counterpart President Vaclav Klaus.
On an official visit to the Czech Republic the Finnish Prime Minister Matti Vanhannen said his country would open its doors to workers from the Czech Republic and the European Union's nine other new members as of April. The Czech Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek thanked his Finnish counterpart, saying that he hoped other EU countries would follow Finland's example. At the moment only three of the EU's old members -Britain, Ireland and Sweden - have welcomed workers from the newcomer states. Portugal and Spain are believed to be considering a similar move.
Jiri Vyvadil has been recalled from his post of deputy justice minister and will now return to the Supreme Administrative Court. The decision was taken by the chairman of the country's court, Josef Baxa. Mr Baxa indicated that Mr Vyvadil did not sufficiently address judiciary reform in his post. But, Mr Vyvadil has primarily come under criticism in recent days for having met with controversial Czech businessman Tomas Pitr, appealing an eight-year sentence for tax evasion. Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek allegedly knew about the meeting, which took place in January. Vyvadil's relocation has diffused growing tension between Justice Minister Pavel Nemec who intended to sack him and Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek who said he saw no reason for his dismissal.
Czech president burns giant red underpants at press briefing
Merkel calls Sudeten German expulsion “immoral”, drawing Czech ire
Restoration work on Prague’s Astronomical Clock reveals hidden secrets
Czech restaurants and pubs facing serious shortage of workers
Ozzy Osbourne performing in Prague with Hollywood Vampires, featuring Johnny Depp