The minister of finance, Andrej Babiš, will put a proposal for a CZK 700 million loan to OKD to the cabinet, he announced on Tuesday after talks with managers at the bankrupt mining company. The firm had been seeking to borrow CZK 1 billion. Minister of Industry and Trade Jan Mládek and Moravia and Silesian regional governor Miroslav Novák, both of the Social Democrats, welcomed the move by the ANO chief, which should ensure salaries are paid for August. OKD – which employs around 10,000 people – filed for bankruptcy in May after the government refused to provide it with financial assistance.
The Prague 5 district authority is due to sign a contract with an investor in the coming days who will build a big wheel on the banks of the Vltava River, the local deputy mayor Martin Slabý told journalists on Tuesday. Some locals are opposed to the construction of the 60-metre Ferris wheel, as are opposition councillors and the City of Prague.
The Czech foreign minister, Lubomír Zaorálek, is beginning a working visit to the United States during which he will take part in a number of high-level meetings. On Tuesday Mr. Zaorálek will be received at the United Nations in New York by its general secretary, Ban Ki-moon, before speaking at the UN’s Economic and Social Council. The Czech foreign policy chief will also attend a pledging conference in support of Iraq and a Global Coalition against ISIL meeting during his four-day stay.
The state attorney has filed charges against one-time prime minister Petr Nečas and his wife Jana Nečasová (formerly Nagyová) over allegations of bribery. Their case involves the accusation that they offered three MPs in Mr. Nečas’s Civic Democrats positions at state companies in exchange for backing a government bill. Mrs. Nečasová at that time headed Mr. Nečas’s office. The three MPs concerned have not been charged. Mrs. Nečasová also faces charges of not paying tax on gifts, such as jewellery and expensive handbags, valued at CZK 10 million. Her arrest in 2013 helped bring about the fall of Mr. Nečas’s cabinet.
US citizen Kevin Dahlgren, who is charged with four murders, attempted to cut himself and tried to grab a guard’s baton while in custody, according to a prison report read on Tuesday in the court in Brno where he is standing trial. The 24-year-old was placed in a prison psychiatric wing following the incidents. Dahlgren could face life in prison if found guilty of killing four of his relatives in Brno in 2013. He immediately fled to the US but was later extradited to face justice in the Czech Republic.
Finance Minister Andrej Babiš says he has secured the funds to increase teachers’ pay from September, not January as originally planned. Mr. Babiš told Czech Television that the money would come from savings made in the servicing of the state debt. The government last month approved an eight-percent rise in teachers’ salaries from the start of next year. Unions have been pushing for the increase to be brought forward to coincide with the start of the academic year. The cabinet will discuss the matter next week.
South Moravian regional governor Michal Hašek has for years been represented by a non-existent spokesperson, Mladá fronta Dnes reported on Tuesday. The newspaper said that the fictitious Lucie Proutníková was a cover for lobbyist Jana Mrencová, who has been found guilty of attempting to bribe journalists. Mr. Hašek said he had no idea who Proutníková was, despite the fact that she had issued a statement on his behalf only last month, the daily said. Mrs. Mrencová denies the accusation.
A woman who stabbed a teenage boy to death in a school attack is set to remain in secure detention, a Brno court ruled on Tuesday, respecting the recommendation of an expert committee. Barbara Orlová (27) killed the youth – who was protecting a female classmate – at a secondary school in the Vysočina town of Žďár nad Sázavou in 2014. She carried out the attack less than a year after being released from a psychiatric institution where she had been placed over a previous, non-fatal school attack.
At a summit of EU foreign ministers in Brussels on Monday Czech Foreign Minister Lubomír Zaorálek assured his French counterpart Jean-Mark Ayrault that the Czech Republic would maintain its current presence in Mali alongside French troops. The Czech Republic has a sixty-strong contingent in Mali, which it increased last year in order to allow more French troops to be redeployed to units fighting ISIS. Minister Zaorálek expressed appreciation of France’s leading role in the fight against radical Islam said France could count on the Czech Republic to actively support the war on terror.
War veteran Lt.Col. Karel Šerák died on Sunday at the age of 93, the ctk news agency reported citing Ostrava City Hall. Serak fought on the eastern front in World War II, joining the Czechoslovak Tank brigade which fought at Dukla Pass and helped in the liberation of Ostrava. He received a number of medals for bravery including the Czechoslovak War Cross and the Dukla Pass Medal. Last year Ostrava City Hall made him an honorary citizen.
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