Family and friends on Friday paid their last respects to filmmaker Jiří Krejčík who passed away last week at the age of 95. The funeral took place in Prague’s St Vojtěch church, the same where Jiří Krejčík was baptized 95 years ago. Mr Krejčík’s best known films include the 1960 WWII drama Higher Principle, the biographical film about the singer Ema Destinová entitled The Divine Ema, and others.
The Indian army has recued two Czech tourists stranded in the town of Kishtwar, in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, the Times of India reported. The Czechs, who were planning a trekking expedition in the mountains, were unable to leave the town since last week when violence between Muslims and Hindus broke out and curfew was imposed in Kishtwar. They were forced to stay in their hotel, and approached the local authorities for help. The army has transported them to the regional capital Jammu.
President Zeman also told Haló Noviny that he did not rule out future involvement of the Communist Party in government. The president said that in his view the Communist Party could first support a minority Social Democrat cabinet in office as a “transitional phase” to direct participation in government. On the grounds of a resolution passed in 1995, the Social Democrats have consistently rejected cooperation with the Communist Party on a national level but the Zeman faction in the Social Democrats, which has been gaining strength, could move to scrap the ban.
The Czech Foreign Ministry on Friday issued a warning against all travel to Egypt. The ministry warned that due to unpredictable development in the country, Czech citizens should avoid any trips to Egypt including its popular Red Sea resorts Sharm el-Sheikh. Hurgada, Marsa Alam, Dahab, Nuweiba and Taba. Czech tourists in these resorts should not leave hotel premises until departing from the country, the ministry said.
The majority of actors in Prague’s National Theatre who resigned in protest against the dismissal of the theatre’s director have withdrawn their resignations, the head of the theatre’s drama department said on Friday. Nearly half of the ensemble resigned after Culture Minister Jiri Balvin dismissed the National Theatre’s director, Jan Burian, earlier this month. But the decision caused outrage among the arts community and politicians, and the prime minister ordered Mr Balvín to reinstate the theatre’s director. Two of best known actors in the National Theatre, Miroslav Donutil and Richard Krajčo, have not withdrawn their resignations and will cooperate with the theatre as freelancers.
Anti-Romany rallies are to be held in five Czech regions on August 24, a police spokeswoman said. Far-right extremists said they wanted to protest against alleged high crime levels among the Romany community, and against police brutality. The police have not disclosed the exact locations but rallies are expected in České Budějovice, Jičín, Plzeň, and other cities. In Ostrava, local authorities have banned an anti-Romany rally; they said several Romany groups had already booked public space for the same time. A series of rallies targeting the Romany community has been held in places across the Czech Republic in recent months, prompting international criticism. Several organizations have asked the Czech authorities to protect the Romany community against violence and intimidation.
Police are investigating whether former defence minister Vlasta Parkanová did not break the law when she published transcriptions of the police’s interrogations of all of the witnesses and accused persons in a case in which she faces charges of authorising an overpriced contract to purchase military planes. The former minister posted the materials on her own website without comment. The case has also been handed to the Office for Protection of Private Data. Several witnesses whose testimonies were published have protested against the move.
The Czech Republic drew 1:1 with Hungary in a soccer friendly in Budapest on Wednesday night. The Czechs took the lead in the middle of the first half when striker Libor Kozák of Lazio found the net for his first international goal, before the hosts replied through a penalty after the break. It was Michal Bílek’s men’s last warm-up game before key World Cup qualifiers against Armenia and Italy next month; with six of 10 games played, the Czechs lie third in their qualification group for the World Cup in Brazil, one point behind second-placed Bulgaria.
The Czech national who is being investigated by the Egyptian authorities in connection with the unexplained death of his 36-year-old wife and eight-year-old daughter in Hurghada two weeks ago has asked to be allowed to travel home. The request was made in connection with the unstable situation in the country. The man is a suspect in the ongoing investigation and although the authorities have returned his passport he is not allowed to leave the country until the investigation is concluded. An autopsy on the bodies was conducted both in Egypt and here in the Czech Republic but no official reports have so far been released. According to an Egyptian doctor who examined the bodies the mother and daughter were poisoned.
Work has fully resumed along a highly-disputed stretch of the D1 highway which is undergoing reconstruction. The firm responsible for repairing this stretch of the road halted work on it several weeks ago on the argument that it was in a much worse state of disrepair than previously thought and demanded more money from the investor. Although a threat from the transport minister to terminate the firm’s contract resulted in some renewed activity, little progress was made. Now the Czech Road and Highway Directorate has promised to pay the firm an additional 5 to 6 million crowns to cover the extra costs and the reconstruction work appears to be back on track.
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