Topic Archive Domestic affairs

End of an era for Czech Constitutional Court?

21-03-2012 16:52 | Jan Richter

Eliška Wagnerová, photo: CTK The vice-president of the Czech Constitutional Court, and one of its most distinct judges, Eliška Wagnerová retired on Tuesday as her ten-year term expired. Dubbed the Queen of Dissent, Justice Wagnerová left a deep mark on the top Czech court. She was behind some of the court’s crucial rulings, including that on the EU’s Lisbon treaty, and unwaveringly stood up to political pressure. Radio Prague asked Prof. Jiří Přibáň from Cardiff Law School whether her departure marks the end of an era for the highest court in the land.  More

Police warn investigations will suffer if next year’s budget cuts go through

20-03-2012 14:39 | Christian Falvey

The police have warned of tremendous impacts if the government’s wide-ranging budget cuts go ahead. The current plan calls for a cutting a four billion crown slice from the police budget in 2013 and an additional two and a half billion the year after that. According to an internal police risk assessment reported on this week by the daily Právo, those cuts in practical terms will mean closing a quarter of the country’s police stations and laying off a corresponding amount of the force, some 10,000 police officers. The report warns that that would leave the police unable to properly fulfil one of their main tasks – investigations.  More

Pundit: Citizens’ initiative calling for resignation of government indicates a new level of public frustration

19-03-2012 14:26 | Sarah Borufka

Photo: CTK Thousands of people gathered for anti-government protests following a call from the heterogeneous protest group Holešovská výzva, or Holešovská appeal. Among their main demands is the resignation of the current government – as well a new law that would introduce automatic referenda. Analysts say that the demonstrations, which last week were held not only in Prague, but also in cities across the country, could herald a new era of escalating public frustration with the government’s policies and harsh austerity measures. Political pundit Jiří Pehe speaks about the aims of the new protest movement and its significance.  More

New slat armour to be used on additional Czech military vehicles in Afghanistan

16-03-2012 15:33 | Jan Velinger

Photo: Czech Television Additional transport vehicles used by the Czech military in Afghanistan are to receive added protection developed by defence firm VOP-026 Šternberk: cage (or slat) armour capable of defending against rocket-propelled grenades or shape-charged warheads. Lightweight and made of superior alloy steel, the slat armour can consistently save lives in attacks that otherwise almost certainly prove fatal.  More

Bárta trial adjourns after an ugly week

09-03-2012 16:50 | Christian Falvey

Vít Bárta, photo: CTK The first round of the trial of leading Public Affairs member and former transport minister Vít Bárta comes to a close on Friday. Over the course of the week no less than six past and present government ministers have taken the stand to give testimony in the biggest corruption case in recent memory, which will be adjourned on Friday while the court goes over the evidence.  More

Trade union group fears that government cuts will weaken stagnant Czech economy

06-03-2012 14:53 | Dominik Jůn

The Czech government is debating continued austerity measures, hoping to save 23 billion crowns in 2012, 42.4 billion in 2013 and a whopping 84.4 billion in 2014. But the plans have been met with opposition from trade unions, who are highlighting that the cuts could lead to as many as 24,000 public sector job losses and include layoffs of as many as 17,000 teachers as well as 3,500 police officers within the next two years. Jaroslav Zavadil, head of the Czech-Moravian Confederation of Trade Unions recently called this “a path to hell, which will destroy the public sector.”  More

Matouš Turek - a member of the “Week of Unrest” student movement

05-03-2012 17:03 | Dominik Jůn

Students protest in Hradec Králové, photo: CTK My guest today is 22-year-old Prague history, English and American Studies student Matouš Turek, who is a member of the “Week of Unrest” student movement that has been protesting proposed government reforms to the education system. So Matouš, what exactly are the proposed reforms and what don’t you like about them?  More

De-facto leader of Public Affairs stands trial for corruption

05-03-2012 16:04 | Daniela Lazarová

Vít Bárta, photo: CTK The junior coalition party Public Affairs, which won seats in Parliament on a strong-anti-corruption agenda, is facing a major test of its credibility. The party’s de facto leader, former transport minister and present head of the party’s parliamentary group in the lower house Vít Bárta is standing trial on charges of corruption. The court hearings which began on Monday will hear testimony from ministers and MPs and the outcome of the much anticipated trial could shake the party in its foundations.  More

Fate of education reforms unclear after week of student protests

01-03-2012 16:13 | Daniela Lazarová

Photo: CTK A week of student protests against proposed reforms of the education system culminated with mass demonstrations around the country on Wednesday. After a night spent sleeping rough on the floor of university halls and lecture rooms students and university staff took to the streets to show their discontent with reforms which they claim will reduce the autonomy of education institutions, shift the burden of funding to students and put the academic sphere under the influence of private enterprise and politicians.  More

Leading economist on austerity package: public sector still squandering money

29-02-2012 17:12 | Daniela Lazarová

The Finance Minister’s austerity plan for 2013, which includes far-reaching measures to increase state revenues and cut public spending, has raised an outcry from the opposition benches with the leader of the opposition Social Democrats Bohuslav Sobotka saying his party would table a vote of no-confidence in the three-party centre-right coalition.  More

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