Police have charged one person in connection with an attack in Rumburk at the weekend with bodily harm and harm with racial intent. If found guilty, he could face up to 12 years in prison. A second Roma suspect is under investigation and the police are searching for other members of a group of up to 20 aggressors who attacked four people leaving a local discotheque. The incident took place at around five am on Sunday morning; the victims said they were followed by the assailants who allegedly beat them with telescopic batons. Police have not ruled out additional charges in the case.
TOP 09 deputy leader and Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek has confirmed that only ministerial deputies on behalf of the party will take part in upcoming cabinet meetings. The move is the result of a protest by the right-wing party over controversial state official Ladislav Bátora, who is the head of Human Resources at the Education Ministry and the head of an ultra-right civic association. He has been the centre of controversy since insulting TOP 09 leader Karel Schwarzenberg online, as well as for earlier public statements and opposition to a recent gay pride festival. Minister Kalousek expressed the hope that Mr Bátora would be recalled from his post within a matter of days; fellow coalition member Karolína Peake said the Bátora case would be discussed by party leaders on Tuesday.
Ambulance crews in the region of Central Bohemia on Monday responded to 30 incidents in which individuals collapsed from the summer temperatures of around 30 degrees Celsius currently in the Czech Republic. Two women died, officials reported. A 65-year-old woman collapsed at a parking lot in Kladno, near Prague, suffering heart failure and could not be resuscitated. Another, an 80-year-old woman died in the hallway of her apartment building. Emergency crews also registered a higher number of strokes on Monday. The heat wave is expected to last through to Saturday, after which temperatures are expected to fall.
A 30-year-old Czech motorcyclist faces up to three years in prison after driving without a license (recently remanded) and trying to evade police in a dangerous escape attempt on Sunday. The rider came to the police officers’ attention by speeding and weaving in and out of lanes without signaling, causing them to pursue. The motorcyclist responded by trying to speed away, several times brushing against the police vehicle before crashing at the Strakonice exit. Mladá fronta Dnes reported that the vehicle itself continued for a dozen metres or so before crashing. The suspect meanwhile tried to run but was caught by the officers in foot pursuit.
Some Civic Democrats have charged that the TOP 09 party are deliberately making use of the controversy surrounding state official Ladislav Bátora to bring down the government and even pave the way for early elections. Deputy leader Pavel Drobil told Parlamentní listy that was what TOP 09’s recent steps suggested to him. But such intent was denied by TOP 09’s deputy leader Miroslav Kalousek. Mr Bátora’s continuation in a high post at the Education Ministry remains unacceptable for coalition party TOP 09 including its leader Karel Schwarzenberg; Mr Bátora has former ties to the extremist National Party and has made numerous controversial statements on the Czech political scene – most recently opposing a gay pride festival in the Czech capital. Two members of the Public Affairs party, meanwhile, are reportedly urging the education minister to recall the official from his post.
Officials have raised the flag of Libya’s Transitional National Council
(TNC) at the Libyan diplomatic mission in Prague, after rebel forces took
over much of the North African country’s capital Tripoli – six months
after fighting began against Colonel Muammar Gadhafi’s regime.
International news organisations have reported that while rebels secured
most parts of the Libyan capital, fighting continued on Monday at Colonel
Gadhafi’s heavily-defended compound. The whereabouts of the Libyan
The Czech news agency reported that as of Monday, Libyan diplomats in the Czech Republic will officially represent the TNC, adding that the mission had released a statement thanking Czechs for their stance on developments in Libya. At the same time, chargé d’affaires Nuri Ghavi expressed regret that Prague has not yet officially recognised the rebel government.
Witnesses in a legal case against Czech hockey player Radek Duda have testified in a Karlovy Vary court that the suspect brutally beat-up a senior pedestrian in January after an incident between the two at a street crossing. Mr Duda is alleged to have exited his vehicle and beat up the older man – who is seeking 50,000 crowns in damages. The player claimed in court that he only pinched the other man in the face. Witnesses, by contrast, say he punched the sEnior eight or nine times, and even that the player held the older man with one hand while hitting him with the other. The 32-year-old Duda was let go by his former team Chomutov over the incident; if found guilty he could face up to two years in prison.
The Czech Republic’s National Security Authority (NBU) will manage a planned centre combating cyber crime, the daily Právo reports. The project was agreed by the head of the Interior Ministry, the National Security Authority and the prime minister. According to the newspaper, the Interior Ministry has sought the establishment of a centre focusing on Internet threats for some time but lacked the necessary funding and expertise. No timeframe for the new centre has been announced but concrete steps are to be discussed next week. Právo cited former interior minister Martin Pecina as saying the Czech Republic was the only country in the EU that still lacked a cyber crimes centre.
A new poll conducted by the SC&C agency has suggested that only 15
percent of Czechs consider the controversial Mašín brothers
The Mašíns - Josef and Ctirad, the later of whom died recently in the US
at the age of 81 and is to be buried there with military honors this week
– led a group of resistance fighters and saboteurs in Czechoslovakia who
were fiercely opposed to the totalitarian regime. They killed three
communist police officers – one of them after he was subdued – in the
1950s in preparation for their dramatic attempt to leave the country and
three East German police during their actual escape to West Berlin in
In the survey, almost two-thirds of respondents said they did not believe
the Mašíns deserved any honors for their deeds; 27 percent said they
considered members of the Mašín group “criminals”.
To date, the Mašins have been recognised for their bravery only by former prime minister Mirek Topolánek, although the current prime minister, Petr Nečas, has repeatedly praised the group’s bravery. Last year at the funeral of group member Milan Paumer he slammed criticism of their escape – one of the most dramatic in the Cold War. This week Ctirad Mašín – in memoriam – and his brother Josef will be presented with the military honour the Golden Linden – conferred by the Czech defence minister, and former Czech ambassador to the US, Alexandr Vondra.
Czech tennis player Tomáš Berdych was forced to retire from the semi-final of the Cincinnati Masters after dropping the first set 7:5 to Novak Djokovic. The player’s retirement from the match, the first at the tournament since 1977, came two days after the player aggravated his shoulder in a doubles match. The Cincinnati Masters match against Djokovic is Berdych’s sixth semifinal loss this season.
Czechs and Germans in 1930s Czechoslovakia: a complex picture
Wide range of events in store for Czechs this weekend as 30-year anniversary of Velvet Revolution reaches climax
Hundreds of thousands again gather in Prague to voice their opposition to prime minister
Škoda unveils 4th-generation Octavia ahead of model’s 60th anniversary
Shabby pub profits from nostalgia