A Czech Airlines plane flying from Cyprus to Prague on Saturday turned back after smoke was smelled on board. A spokesperson for CSA told the news website idnes.cz that passengers had not been in danger. She said the smoke had been caused by a short circuit in one of the aircraft’s computers; once the problem was rectified, passengers reboarded the plane at Larnaca airport on Sunday morning and it returned to the Czech Republic.
The leader of the right-of-centre Civic Democrats says he does not intend to provide proof to back up his assertion that the Social Democrats had him followed on a recent trip to Italy. Mirek Topolánek accused his main rivals of dirty tricks after paparazzi-style photos of him meeting influential lobbyists and business people appeared in the Czech media. He told reporters on Sunday it was sufficient to be aware of a link between the centre-left Social Democrats and Karel Randák, a former intelligence chief who admits to having provided the press with the pictures. The Social Democrats, whose own Milan Urban also appeared in the photos, have denied being behind them.
Police say they are not planning to heed a call from local officials in Husinec on the outskirts of Prague to evict a group of Romanian Romanies who have set up a makeshift camp there. The Romanies, who are keeping a vigil for a relative who is seriously ill in a Prague hospital, were previously camped elsewhere in the city and are now on private land with the permission of its owner. However, they have no running water or other basic facilities and the mayor of Husinec, Marie Těthalová, called on the police to expel the group by lunchtime on Sunday. She said there was no way the municipality would pay for mobile toilets or drinking water. The Romanian Romanies arrived in Prague over a week ago after a teenage relative they regard as a prince almost drowned in a lake in central Bohemia.
The Prague Proms international music festival ends at the city’s Municipal House on Sunday with a “space night”. The closing concert features the Czech National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Libor Pešek performing Holst’s The Planets accompanied by a video projection. The fifth annual Prague Proms got underway on July 17 and has, according to organisers, been almost completely sold out.
The Czech high jumper Jaroslav Bába came third at a Super Grand Prix meeting in Stockholm on Friday night. The 24-year-old took bronze with a jump of 227 cm. It was the last competition for Bába before the World Athletics Championships in Berlin this month, whose biggest success to date was a bronze medal at the Olympics in Athens.
Local authorities in Husinec on the outskirts of Prague have asked the police to move on a group of Romanian Romanies who have made a makeshift camp there. The Romanies, who are keeping a vigil for a relative who is seriously ill in a Prague hospital, were previously camped elsewhere in the city and are now on private land with the permission of its owner. However, they have no running water or other basic facilities and the mayor of Husinec, Marie Těthalová, has called on the police to expel the group by lunchtime on Sunday. She said there was no way the municipality would pay for mobile toilets or drinking water. The Romanian Romanies arrived in Prague over a week ago after a teenage relative they regard as a prince almost drowned in a lake in central Bohemia.
The first annual River Film Festival has begun in the south Bohemian town of Písek. The 10-day international film festival, which runs until Sunday week, includes 170 feature films and 150 shorts. Among the special guests are the US film director and former Monty Python member Terry Gilliam. The River Film Festival also features a number of accompanying events, including live music concerts and theatre performances.
Czech industrial output in June fell by 12.3 percent compared to the same month last year, according to preliminary data released by the Czech Statistical Office. That is being seen as relatively good news as it represents the smallest drop in the last six months: in January industrial output fell by 23 percent, while in May it decreased by 22 percent, year-on-year. Analyst Jiří Škop told the Czech News Agency that June’s results were a very pleasant surprise. He said the Czech economy, which relies heavily on the auto industry, was benefiting from car scrapping incentives introduced in export markets. Meanwhile, the president of the Czech Chamber of Commerce, Petr Kužel, said Czech firms probably had the worst of the financial crisis behind them.
The leader of the Civic Democrats Mirek Topolánek has called on the
Social Democrats and the party’s chairman Jiří Paroubek to stop using
the methods of the StB, referring to Czechoslovakia’s communist era
secret police. Mr Topolánek made the comments at a news conference in
Prague on Friday that saw his first reaction to newspaper photographs of
him meeting influential lobbyists and business people while on holiday in
Italy. He did not give any direct evidence for the claims and Mr Paroubek
later responded that unfounded accusations were also StB practice. The
Social Democrats deny being behind the pictures.
As for those he was photographed with in Italy, including a lobbyist for the power giant ČEZ, the Civic Democrats leader said such meetings were merely coincidental, as Tuscany was “the new Špindlerův Mlýn”, a reference to a popular Czech ski resort. Mr Topolánek said he did not know who owned the villa he had stayed at and refused to provide receipts to show he had paid for the recent holiday.
Paparazzi-style photographs that appeared this week were provided to the media by a former head of the Czech civilian intelligence agency Karel Randák, who said he wanted to show how things were done in this country. Mr Randák, who the Civic Democrats say is close to the Social Democrats, was fired in 2006 when Mirek Topolánek was prime minister.
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