Every eighth victim of a road accident during the last six months has been a motorbike driver, according to recent police statistics. Altogether 56 motorcyclists have lost their lives on Czech roads since the beginning of this year. The most frequent victims of road accidents are men between the age of 25 and 34. Police attribute the fact to a rising number in motorcycle sales, which has been caused by falling prices. The sale of motorbikes in the Czech Republic has tripled over the past ten years.
Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg has said that he considers the
investigation into Deputy Prime Minister Jiří Čunek’s personal
finances closed. Speaking in a televised debate on Sunday, Mr Schwarzenberg
said the private audit performed at his request ruled out that Mr Čunek
had taken a bribe. At the same time, Mr Schwarzenberg wants to continue
with the audit, since it turned out to be incomplete. The investigators,
however, say that the contents of the missing 700 pages from the close to
5,000-page police report were highly unlikely to influence the overall
conclusion of the audit.
The report of the US investigation agency Kroll says that while there is no evidence to suggest that Mr. Čunek had taken bribes, he received high rewards for lobbying, paid out per day which is not subject to taxation, and which would explain the striking difference between his official income and the large sums of money deposited on his various bank accounts.
The administration of Krkonoše National Park has limited access to some areas of the park to protect it against an invasion of blueberry pickers. The measure will stay in force till mid-October. Those who are caught breaking the ban face a fine up to 10 000 crowns. Tourist and bike tracks will stay accessible as usual. According to estimates, the amount of blueberries harvested per year goes up to 200 000 litres. The price for this amount on the market amounts to millions of crowns.
A man from Kolín who was attacked by a dog on Thursday has died in hospital. An 81-year old man from the central Bohemian town of Kolín was in the backyard of his house, when the Argentinian Mastiff, belonging to his neighbour, attacked. His daughter, who tried to help him, was badly mauled as well. Police officers who arrived at the scene shot the dog when it turned to attack them. Cases of dogs attacking people have appeared in the media with increasing frequency and evoked much public concern. The latest incident has prompted some lawmakers to call for a tighter law in dog ownership.
Tomáš Dvořák, three-time decathlon world champion, has not completed the final competition of his career. Dvořák has pulled out of the national championship, when he sustained an injury in the first event on day two, the 110 m hurdles. The 36-year old decathlete, who has been dogged by injuries in recent years, will continue to work as a trainer and a sports commentator for the Czech television.
The Czech Republic has the fourth most expensive diesel in Europe, according to the data published by a German website clever-tanken.de. At the end of this week, diesel in the Czech Republic was selling for 34.77 crowns a litre, a price exceeded only in Great Britain, Norway, Sweden and Italy. The cost of the country’s best-selling Natural 95 petrol is the thirteenth most expensive in Europe.
Conditioning the ratification of the Lisbon treaty by the approval of the treaty on the location of a US radar base on Czech soil is unacceptable, deputy chairman of the Chamber of Deputies Lubomír Zaorálek has said in reaction to Prime Minister Mirek Topolánek’s previous statement. Mr Topolánek said earlier this week that the rejection of the radar agreement might negatively affect the approval of the Lisbon treaty. Speaking in a televised debate on Sunday, Mr Zaorálek, member of the opposition Social Democrats, said it was scandalous to trade one treaty for the other. Senate chairman Přemysl Sobotka, on the other hand, said that linking the two agreements was logical.
Czech military airplane flying to Afghanistan, which was denied transit
over Turkmenistan on Friday, has left Prague again after receiving a
written permit from Turkmen authorities. The plane is carrying Afghan
children who were treated in the Czech Republic, soldiers who are returning
from holiday back to the Afghan mission as well as part of a new
The Czechs were given a verbal promise on Friday that they could fly over Turkmenistan but the country’s authorities eventually refused to issue a written permit and the plane had to return to the Czech Republic. The plane took off from Prague’s Kbely airport once again on Saturday after it was given a written consent. Czech planes had encountered similar problems with Turkmen authorities in 2006 and 2007.