Parts of the Krkonoše National Park have been closed off to the public as of Saturday. Park officials have done so in an attempt to limit damage to nature, which is often caused by blueberry pickers who go off the marked trails in the summer months. The regulation, which does not apply to marked trails, will be in effect until 15 October. The park has been issuing similar regulations since 2001.
The police will question the current Defense Minister Vlastimil Picek, a former defense minister Alexander Vondra and the acting chairman of the Civic Democratic party Martin Kuba, in connection with cases involving former chief-of-staff of the prime minister’s office Jana Nagyová. The current and former defense ministers will be question in connection to Mrs. Nagyová allegedly ordering the military intelligence service to follow then prime minister Petr Nečas’ wife. Mr. Kuba will be questioned in connection to alleged bribes that were offered to former Civic Democratic MPs last year by member of the cabinet. Mrs. Nagyová, who is at the center of the multi-case scandal that brought down Mr. Nečas’s government last month, was released from jail on Friday after a month in police custody.
The Czech health authorities registered another 96 new cases of HIV in the Czech Republic in the first six months of this year, according to the national reference lab for HIV/AIDS. In the same period last year, 100 new cases of the infection were registered in the country. Six people died of the disease between January and June 2006. Since 1985 when monitoring began, 1983 cases of HIV have been recorded in the country.
Three former MPs charged with bribe-taking but released this week could still face criminal proceedings. The Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that their actions were covered by their parliamentary immunity. The three former Civic Democrat deputies faced bribery charges for allegedly having agreed to quit their seats in the lower house in return for posts in state-run companies. However, a spokesman for the Supreme Court said on Friday their immunity only applied to their decision to step down as MPs while any further circumstances as well as their motivation could be subject to criminal proceedings.
Sparta Prague tied 2:2 against Sweden’s BK Häcken in the first leg of Europa League’s second round qualifier in Prague on Thursday. Sparta captain David Lafata scored the first two goals but the visitors came back and tied the game with hits in the 69th and 77th minute, respectively. Meanwhile, Liberec lost their Europa League qualifier 1:2 against Skonto Riga.
Transport Minister Zdeněk Žák has made changes to Czech Railways’ board of supervisors. Five members in the eight-member board of the state-owned firm including its chairman Libor Antoš, will be replaced, the ministry said on Friday. Czech Railways’ trade unions said the move would eventually lead to the dismissal of Czech Railways CEO, Petr Žaluda. The new supervisory board is to convene on July 30.
Czech Prime Minister Jiří Rusnok will head a working group overseeing the drawing of EU funds. The group will also include two government ministers and representatives of the regions, the prime minister told reporters on Friday. The Czech Republic has had serious problems with securing EU funds, and has been criticized by the European Commission over insufficient control of EU-funded projects.
Three people died and another two suffered serious injuries in a road crash near Letohrad, in eastern Bohemia on Friday afternoon. The accident involving two cars which collided at a crossroads, the police said. The causes of the accident are under investigation; the police are looking for any witnesses.
All four people accused in a bribery case of former PM Petr Nečas’ chief of staff have been released from police custody. Mr Nečas’s former chief aide, Jana Nagyová, left an Ostrava prison shortly after noon on Friday following a court ruling that there was no longer a risk of them influencing witnesses. Another three people, including the former head of the Czech military intelligence service, Ondřej Páleník, were released later on Friday They were detained last month in a large-scale police operation related to the case of three former MPs accused of bribe taking. The scandal eventually led to the collapse of the centre-right Czech government.
The Czech police have arrested four Polish citizens aged between 19 and 37 suspected of robbing over 850 houses in the Czech Republic. Investigators believe the gang started operating in the country in 2009; they allegedly burgled houses at night while their inhabitants were asleep; they entered through windows or balconies, and stole mainly cash, gold and jewellery. Total damages have been estimated at over 35 million crowns. If convicted, the four men face up to eight years in prison.
Forgotten Czech net bag makes a comeback
Iconic Czech brands that survived competition from the West after the fall of communism
Czechs and Germans in 1930s Czechoslovakia: a complex picture
Cold War “king of Šumava” story brought to life in new film by Irish director
Unions: Strike Wednesday will hit most Czech schools