For the first time ever, ten Czech students were admitted to the Future Leaders Exchange (FLEX) program this year, giving them the chance to spend an academic year in the United States living with a volunteer host family and attending a U.S. high school. As they embarked on their adventure on Monday, the US ambassador to Prague, Stephen King, came to Prague airport to wish them a great year.
Hundreds of Czech scouts are currently in the United States taking part in the movement’s World Jamboree, which is being attended by 40,000 people from all around the globe. I spoke to Czech Radio’s reporter Jakub Lucký, who is on the ground in West Virginia, and asked him to tell me more about the Czech presence at this year’s international gathering:
The Czech Foreign Ministry registered a heightened interest in visas to the
Czech Republic last year, receiving over 722,000 requests overall. The
biggest interest was in so-called Schengen visas which give foreign
visitors 90 days of free movement around Schengen.
The number of requests for long-term or permanent residence in the country doubled to 37,000 in 2018, according to Foreign Ministry sources.
The Czech Centres in London and New York are getting new directors this spring, with Přemysl Pela assuming control in the UK capital and Miroslav Konvalina taking the helm in the Big Apple. We spoke to both before their departure for the key branches of the Czech Republic’s cultural diplomacy network in the English-speaking world.
Czech Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček, who is on a working visit to
the United States, on Friday met for talks with his US
counterpart,Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
The two officials discussed cyber-security, the situation in Syria and Afghanistan and the US administration’s stated intention to impose tariffs on European car-makers.
Minister Petříček tweeted shortly after the meeting that the two sides had praised the state of bilateral relations and cooperation in third countries. He said he had taken a strong stand against tariffs and a possible trade war between Europe and the US, expressing the hope that this scenario could be averted in the coming weeks and months.
The Czech foreign minister said the US had welcomed the fact that the Czech Republic took cyber-security and the warnings regarding the Chinese company Huawei seriously.
He said he had extended an invitation for US Secretary of State Pompeo to visit the Czech Republic.
Czech Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček, who is on an official visit to
the US, is due to meet for talks with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on
The two sides are expected to discuss trade relations, in particular the tariffs that the US administration is planning to impose on European car makers, cyber-security, and the situation in Syria and Afghanistan, among others.
It is the first visit by a Czech foreign minister to the US since 2012.