Following autopsy results, police have confirmed that the death of composer Karel Svoboda on Sunday was indeed a case of suicide. The body of the 68-year-old Svoboda was found by his wife on Sunday evening at the couple's property in a Prague suburb. He had taken his life using a registered firearm. Karel Svoboda was a household name in the Czech Republic for more than thirty years: he wrote the music for numerous hit songs and also wrote well-known scores for films, musicals and theatre productions.
In Montreal on Monday Czech ice hockey forward Tomas Plekanec helped his team, the Montreal Canadiens, down the Ottawa Senators 3:1. Plekanec scored the Canadiens' final goal on a night honouring legendary Montreal goalie Ken Dryden (when his No. 29 jersey was retired). The win helped Montreal slip just past Ottawa to regain the fourth spot in the Eastern Conference.
A Pentagon official from the US Missile Defence programme has indicated that the United States has other options if proposed radar and rocket installations do not find backing in the Czech Republic and Poland. Speaking to journalists on Monday, Brigadier General Patrick O'Reilly expressed optimism over the plan's implementation, saying that within a number of years the system could be fully-operational. The US is to begin negotiations with the Czech Republic on a missile defence radar site that would complement a proposed rocket base in Poland.
Czech authorities have rejected a request for the release of Jaroslav Starka, the former head of Czech football club Marila Pribram, who is being held in connection with the kidnapping and death of Lambert Krejcir, the father of a fugitive Czech billionaire. The police allege that Starka and six other men either kidnapped or attempted to kidnap Mr Krejcir and then subsequently killed him. He disappeared in the autumn of 2002; his body has never been found.
The petrochemical holding group Unipetrol has sold Kaucuk - a Czech chemicals firm - to Polish chemicals company Dwory for the equivalent of more than 250 million US dollars. The sale had been under negotiation for some time. Dwory, one of twenty-six companies that expressed interest in the original tender, is a strategic partner to Poland's PKN Orlen, the majority owner of Unipetrol. Some minority shareholders reportedly opposed the deal.
The opposition Social Democrats failed on Tuesday to push through a proposal in the lower house for a parliamentary debate discussing the Czech position on the EU constitution. A proposal by the Communist Party that the lower house discuss the possibility of a US radar base in the Czech Republic also did not pass. Both were rejected by votes from the ruling coalition. The Chamber of Deputies deputy chairman Lubomir Zaoralek said he expected the issue of EU constitution to be raised again in the near future.
Pilots from the air force base in Caslav helped a Hungarian civilian plane find its way to Poland after it lost contact with air controllers on Monday. The small two-engine Foker was flying from Dresden to Poland and found itself off course over the Frydlant region in north Bohemia. The pilots escorted the plane en route to Poland until it established contact with Polish air traffic controllers.
The regional court in Brno has handed down sentences of two years in prison to two police officers found guilty of beating up and mentally torturing a fourteen-year-old Romany boy. The court stiffened suspended sentences handed down last year by a city court, originally appealed by both the defendants and the prosecution. According to the court, the officers harassed the victim and one of his friends, but let the other boy go. The remaining boy was then beaten up. An officer twice aimed an unloaded firearm at the boy's head and pulled the trigger.
Councillors at city hall in Brno, Moravia, have agreed that the Modernist Tugendhat villa, designed by legendary architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, should be transferred to the state. The move is intended to facilitate the building's eventual return to the Tugendhat family, the site's original owners. The Tugendhats, who are Jewish, lost the villa when they fled Czechoslovakia in 1938 ahead of the arrival of the Nazis. Family members have said that the building, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site, will remain open to the public. It will have to undergo needed renovations.
Tomas Berdych, the world number 12 in tennis, has been named to the Czech team for the Davis Cup World Group first round tie against the United States in Moravia next month. Joining Berdych on captain Jarolsav Navratil's team are Ivo Minar and Pavel Vizner - representing the country for the first time at this level. Lukas Dlouhy, 23, who is 91st in world rankings, and who has competed in just one Davis Cup match, completes the line-up.
Martin Nekola: Czech Chicago and other untold stories of Czechs abroad
Czech President Zeman addresses Council of Europe
How should socialist architecture be treated now?
Czech pre-election battle plugs into war of words over lithium mining deal
Czech ministry mulls massive recruitment of foreign workers to fill jobs