- Czechs are marking the 70-year-anniversary of the Lidice massacre on Sunday.
- The Czech Prime Minister has said that the Lidice massacre was a turning point in the international fight against the Nazi regime.
- All 14 passengers, one of them Czech, that were on board of a helicopter that went missing in Peru on Wednesday, were killed in an explosion of the aircraft.
- Prime Minister Petr Nečas is set to receive officials from a Romany interest group at his offices on Monday.
- The pilot of a military trainer aircraft was killed in a crash near Ustí nad Labem on Sunday; a female passenger was severely injured in the crash.
Czechs mark 70-year-anniversary of Lidice massacre
Czechs on Sunday are marking the 70-year anniversary of the massacres in the Czech villages of Lidice and Ležáky during World War II. In Lidice, a commemorative event will be held at the mass grave of men executed by the Nazis in retaliation for the assassination of acting Nazi governor of Bohemia and Moravia, Reinhard Heydrich, on May 27, 1942. Prime Minister Petr Nečas will be holding a speech; Cardinal Dominik Duka will be speaking a prayer with attendants.
On June 10, Lidice, in Central Bohemia, was obliterated by the Nazis. The village of Ležáky, East Bohemia, was burnt to the ground on June 24. In Lidice alone, 173 men were executed and most women and children living in the village were deported to concentration camps. On Friday, German President Joachim Gauck sent a letter to his Czech counterpart, stressing that Germany was aware of its historical responsibility for the massacres.
PM: Lidice massacre turning point in fight against Nazi regime
In related news, Prime Minister Petr Nečas said in his speech in Lidice on the occasion of the 70-year anniversary of the Lidice massacre that it signified a turning point in the fight against the Nazi regime. He said the massacre had opened the eyes of the international community to the cruelty of the regime. He added that the event forced many countries to become active in the fight against Hitler Germany. Following the massacre, both France and England declared the Munich Agreement void, the Czech prime minister said.
Peruvian police find shell of missing helicopter; no survivors
A Peruvian police squad found the burned-out shell of a helicopter that had gone missing in the southwestern mountain region. The helicopter had exploded. None of the 14 passengers, among them one Czech citizen, survived. The search for the missing aircraft had been especially difficult due to the mountainous terrain and the cold temperatures. The helicopter had lost contact with tower personnel on Wednesday several hours after take-off.
Prime Minister to receive Romany officials
Czech Prime Minister Petr Nečas is set to meet with officials from the national association of Romanies living in the Czech Republic on Monday. The prime minister is set to discuss ways to help ease tensions between mainstream Czechs and Romanies as well as what can be done to help address problems that plague the Romany community. This is the first time that a Czech prime minister meets with a Romany interest group in his offices; the group had previously made it clear that more initiative on the part of the government regarding the worsening racial tensions in the country would be appreciated.
Military jet trainer aircraft crashes; two injured severely
The pilot of a military jet trainer aircraft of the L-29 Delfín type that crashed near the municipality of Čeradice in the Ustí nad Labem region on Sunday afternoon was killed. A female passenger was also on board; she was injured severely and is being treated at hospital. The former military aircraft belonged to the company Aviation Technologies and Services, which uses these aircraft for training and show purposes. Police are investigating the case.
Fire at Prague airport causes damages of around 200 million Czech crowns
A fire that broke out at Prague’s Ruzyně airport in the night from Saturday to Sunday caused damages of an estimated 200 million Czech crowns. An aircraft of the ATR 42 type from Czech Airlines‘ fleet went up in flames. Firefighters said that the airplane exploded before the fire erupted. It took some 2 hours for firemen to get the fire under control. Police are investigating the cause of the incident.
Around 17,000 join breast cancer awareness march in Prague
Some 17,000 men and women participated in a breast cancer awareness march through the Czech capital on Saturday. Among the participants was the well-known actress Aňa Geislerová. According to organizers, the aim of the event was to draw attention to the disease, its risks and means to prevent it. In addition, the march hopes to motivate women to get a breast exam to help reduce the number of cases that are diagnosed too late. Doctors estimate that some 1600 Czech women die of breast cancer each year; some 6000 have their breasts removed due to cancer.
Czech national squad after defeat in opening game
The Czech national squad has been training “behind closed doors” in Wroclaw two days ahead of its second game in the group phase of the EURO 2012 championships, when the team will play Greece. After the devastating loss of 1:4 against Russia in the Czechs’ opening game, the team and national couch Michal Bílek discussed the shortcomings of the Czech performance. On Sunday afternoon, the Czech team ate lunch at Wroclaw town hall, with the mayor of the city, Rafał Dutkiewicz, who had invited the Czech players.
Cloudy conditions are expected to last into the beginning of next week, with daytime temperatures of up to 20 degrees and occasional rain showers.