The Czech Environmental Inspection office has decided to fine the chemicals maker Draslovka 2 million crowns for a leak of hazardous cyanides into the Elbe River in January. The firm will pay 1.9 million crowns (86,000 dollars) for illegal release of dangerous material and 100,000 crowns for failing to announce a warning in time. Company representatives said they respected the decision, adding that the firm wanted to invest 30 million crowns in special preventative and corrective measures this year. In January a cyanide leak from Draslovka killed some 10 tonnes of fish in an 83-kilometre stretch of the Elbe. Neighbouring Germany complained at the time that it had received the information about the accident too late.
The Czech power utility CEZ said on Monday that Western European power companies, faced with a shortage of skilled technicians and amid expectations of a nuclear power renaissance, are headhunting Czech nuclear power experts. A CEZ spokesman said that many western European countries had run down their nuclear industries and now lacked the necessary experts. The head of the Czech Nuclear Society, Vaclav Hanus, said that some new graduates in nuclear subjects had already taken up offers in Britain. He said British companies were prepared to offer 10,000 pounds (18,400 dollars) as a welcome bonus to new recruits. CEZ, which operates two nuclear power plants in the Czech Republic, says it sees the situation as a threat.
Prague's City Court has adjourned the trial of two elderly men in connection with a murder case dating back to 1957. The two men, Milan Michel and Stanislav Tomes, both former agents of the communist-era intelligence service, are accused of sending a letter bomb to a senior French politician, which killed his wife by mistake. The case was adjourned on Monday due to the two men's age and ill health. The legal proceedings were launched in 2001 after five years of investigation by the Office for the Documentation and Investigation of the Crimes of Communism. The two men face up to 15 years in prison, but because of their age and poor health, they are unlikely to serve sentences even if they are eventually convicted.
The Czech Environmental Inspection has said it intends to fine German companies as well as Czech ones for illegal imports of waste into the Czech Republic. According to the inspection, the German companies failed to make sure their Czech partners were authorised to deal with waste. Altogether 15,000 tonnes of waste has been brought to the Czech Republic. The Environmental Inspection is dealing with 16 illegal dumps, including six or seven from which the waste has not yet been removed. Following an agreement with the Czech Environment Ministry, the German side has removed the waste from most of the sites.
The Independents political movement has lodged a complaint with the
Supreme Administrative Court questioning the validity of the June 2-3
elections, the Independents' election leader Jana Hamplova said on Monday.
She said that the Independents want the court to rule that the mandates of
200 deputies elected over a week ago are invalid. The Independents argue
that the public service Czech Television only provided space in its
pre-election discussion programmes to five political parties that later
emerged successful from the election and therefore created the impression
that there were only five electable parties on the Czech political scene.
According to the Supreme Administrative Court, it is the 26th complaint regarding the elections it has received, but it is the first complaint filed by a political party or movement.
The Czech Republic has beaten the United States 3:0 in a crucial World Cup Group E match. Jan Koller opened the scoring in the fifth minute, nodding home a right wing cross from Zdenek Grygera that eluded two US defenders. Tomas Rosicky gave the Czechs a 2-0 lead in the 36th minute, blasting a right-footed 25-metre shot past Keller who dived to his left in a vain attempt to deny the midfielder. Rosicky scored a third goal in the 76th minute.
The daily Pravo reports that the number of Czechs recycling is on the rise—and in fact, Czechs are among the best recyclers in Europe. The country has already surpassed recycling parameters set by the European Union that are to take effect in 2012. According to the report, 67% of people practiced recycling on a regular basis in 2005 and the average citizen sorted 36.2 Kg. of waste. Czech households recycled a total of 360 000 tonnes of garbage in 2005, and 168 000 tonnes of this material was reused.
The Civic Democratic leadership, which is currently in the process of
trying to secure support for a governing mandate, does not see a grand
coalition with the Social Democrats as a viable option. Mirek Topolanek,
the chairman of the Civic Democratic Party, says that this would go
against the wishes of party members, as well as voters. At present, the
Civic Democrats are in the process of negotiating a coalition with the
Christian Democrats and the Greens, though this solution would still leave
them with only 100 seats in the 200-seat lower house.
Over the weekend, all 74 newly-elected Social Democratic MPs signed a declaration vowing not to support a coalition led by Mr. Topolanek. Over the weekend, Social Democratic leader Mr. Paroubek said that he envisions a new Czech government will be formed by August.
Since the Velvet Revolution in late 1989, every election victor in the Czech Republic has managed to form a government.
Vendula Frintova of the Czech Republic has won bronze in the women's
triathlon World Cup race in Richards Bay, South Africa. It is the first
time in her career that Frintova has placed within the top three
finalists. She finished with a time of 2:06:59 and fainted after she
crossed the finish line. Emma Snowsill of Australia took first place,
and Anja Dittmer of Germany clinched the silver.
Lenka Radova of the Czech Republic finished fifth with a time of 2:07:38.
Archaeologists unearth seven graves dating back to Great Moravian Empire
“Einstein in Bohemia” – Part II: how alienation in ‘half-barbaric’ Prague led him to a new theory of gravity, eventual love of a free Czechoslovakia
“Einstein in Bohemia” – part 1: how a Prague sojourn sparked his theory of general relativity, journey of self-discovery
Valentine’s Day 1945 - When the Americans bombed Prague
Film about tragic fate of great Czech actress highlights communist atrocities in the 1950s