A spokesman for the Czech fire brigade has announced that the Czech Republic is to send special fire-fighting equipment worth around one million Czech crowns (or around 50,000 US dollars) as humanitarian aid to Albania, which has recently been struggling to deal with extensive forest fires that have been exacerbated by the hot weather affecting southern Europe. Earlier in the week the country sent similar aid to Macedonia, which has also been hit by forest fires.
Czech cyclist Jana Horakova has won a bronze medal in the elite category at the world cyclo/cross championships in Victoria, Canada, finishing behind Britain's Shanaze Reade and New Zealand's Sarah Walker. This is the second time the twenty-three-year old cyclist has won a bronze in the event. She also took third place at the world championships in 2002.
Czech lawyer Zdenek Altner has reacted angrily to a decision by the Social
Democrat Party to file a libel suit against him and to also file a
complaint with the Czech Bar Association. Writing on his own website, Mr
Altner said that the Social Democrats were only taking this step because
they thought they still had enough influence with the police and the
justice authorities in this country to be able to bully and harass him.
Social Democrat leader Jiri Paroubek told reporters on Saturday that the decision to sue Mr Altner was in reaction to his claims in the media that the party was trying to destroy him and had blackmailed him. Mr Altner has been suing the Social Democrats for billions of Czech crowns, which he says is owed to him for representing the Social Democrats in a dispute over the ownership of the party's Prague headquarters in 2000.
Civic Democrat MP Lucie Talmanova, along with her baby son Nicolas, has
been discharged from the Prague maternity hospital where she gave birth on
Tuesday. Ms Talmanova was accompanied by Nicolas's father, prime minister
Mirek Topolanek and they posed for photographers outside the apartment
where they live.
Mr Topolanek publicly admitted in January that he had left his wife to live with Ms Talmanova, who was then pregnant with their child. He told journalists that he had asked his wife Pavla Topolankova for a divorce but that she had refused. Mr Topolanek already has three children from his first marriage.
The 33rd Uherske Hradiste film school ended on Sunday. Record numbers attended this year's event in the Moravian town which has become a popular but informal showcase of international films and also hosts a number of film-related sidebars, including workshops and discussions. Over five thousand accredited participants attended this year's film school and the event attracted 130,000 visitors. This year's guests included Argentinian director Hector Babenco and former Czech president Vaclav Havel.
Former supreme state attorney Marie Benesova has said she will not be
standing against President Vaclav Klaus in next year's presidential
elections. Ms Benesova's name had been mentioned in the media as a
possible opposition candidate for the post, especially as Social Democrat
leader Jiri Paroubek said that his party was considering a number of
candidates for the elections next February.
The Social Democrats are currently in negotiations with the Communists, the Greens and the Christian Democrats about fielding a possible joint candidate to stand against Mr Klaus. So far only the name of former Czech foreign minister Jiri Dienstbier has been specifically mentioned as a possible prospect.
Another village on the edge of the Brdy military district in west Bohemia,
which is the site of a proposed US radar base, has voted against having the
facility in the region. Over ninety seven percent of the village's
inhabitants who cast their votes said the municipal authorities should do
all in their power to prevent the base from being built. The results of
the referendum have no legal bearing on any decision taken by the Czech
Several municipalities in the Brdy region have already expressed their opposition to the proposed radar facility, which is meant to be part of a new US missile defence shield in Europe. Although opinion polls have shown that as many as two thirds of Czechs are against building the base in this country, the idea has been supported by most of the parties in the centre-right coalition government. The main opposition party, the Social Democrats, has repeatedly called for a referendum on the issue.
At least seven people have died in car accidents on Czech roads this
weekend the Czech Press Agency has reported. According to police
statistics, a further 24 people were injured on Czech roads over the past
two days and that there were 439 accidents in total. Last week was the
worst in terms of car accidents this year with 32 people dying on Czech
So far this year, there has been an increase of fourteen percent in the number of road fatalities compared with the same period last year. In the first six months of 2006, there were 102,000 car accidents on Czech roads with 434 deaths. In the same period this year, there have been 86,000 accidents and 495 deaths.
Zuzana Paroubkova, the wife of former prime minister and Social Democrat leader Jiri Paroubek has announced that she is going to remain as a member of the Social Democrat Party after all. She had earlier told a tabloid newspaper that she was going to leave the party because she was afraid her political affiliation would affect her charity work for children's homes. Nevertheless, she reversed her decision following talks with her husband. The couple recently announced that they were going to divorce after Mr Paroubek publicly admitted that he was having an affair with his translator Petra Kovacova, who is twenty years younger than him.
Czech daily Lidove noviny has reported that, in relative terms, more people in the Czech Republic die from drowning than in other countries. Around three hundred people die from drowning in the Czech Republic, which is a higher number per capita than countries like the USA, England and Australia. The paper quotes a water safety official who blames the unusually high number of drowning fatalities on a lack of discipline and irresponsible swimming habits among Czech swimmers. He also says Czech drowning rates are particularly bad for a land-locked country.