A Czech woman is reportedly among five foreigners detained by police in Cambodia on Tuesday for allegedly producing illegal drugs in the country. As well as the Czech, the nationalities of the others are said to be Ukraine, the US, Finland, and Russia, according to the Khmer Times. The arrests followed a swoop on houses at the weekend where drug making equipment and drugs were found, according to the paper. The Czech woman, who is reported to be 26-years-old, could face a jail sentence of up to five years if convicted.
A Czech man in his mid-20’s died in an accident in New Zealand’s Southern Alps, according to local media reports. The men fell around 300 meters during a descent of Mount Aspiring. He was being accompanied by an Australian who was uninjured. The dead man’s identity has not been given. The route was described as commonly used and the weather conditions fine. Around 30 people have died in accidents over the last 10 years in the popular mountaineering district.
The Czech Ministry of Environment says that it has successfully managed to prevent 18 billion crowns in European Union funding being clawed back by Brussels. The threatened funds were part of the sum earmarked for the 2007-2013 funding period. Brussels already demanded the return of 7.5 billion crowns in 2013 because of the poor administration and processing of projects. The ministry says spending of European cash earmarked for projects to 2020 is well on track with 55 percent of bids expected to be made by the end of this year and around a quarter of the EU funds already allocated.
The first level security alert currently in place in the Czech Republic will last until at least the Spring, according to interior minister Milan Chovanec. The alert has been in place since March 2015 and, among others, calls for stepped up security at power plants, airports, and sites where large number of people gather. The minister said the level one security measures could be in place for the whole of 2017. The ministry had, reportedly, been mulling before the Berlin attack on a Christmas market whether to reduce the security situation to zero from January.
In football, Sparta Prague have boosted their squad with the acquisition of Romanian defender Bogdan Vatajelu. The 23-year-old joins from the club Universitatae Craiova and has signed a three-and-a-half year contract. Local media reports said that Vatajelu was also a transfer target of Italian club Fiorentina. Vatajelu is a product of the Steaua Bucharest youth academy.
In ice hockey, the Czech team in the World Junior Championships being hosted in Montreal lost their second game against Switzerland 3:4 after extra time. The Czechs left it late to get back in the match, losing 1:3 in the middle of the third period. Two goals by Filip Chlapík allowed them to draw level and force extra time. The Czechs won the first group encounter against reigning champions, Finland.
The Czech European Commissioner charged with justice, consumer rights, and equality dossiers, Věra Jourová, is pushing for German car making giant Volkswagen to adequately compensate its European customers for the so-called dieselgate scandal. According to the German paper, Die Welt, Jourová feels European buyers have not been offered sufficient compensation for the falsified emissions tests compared with customers in the US. She has scheduled a meeting with the Volkswagen boss at the start of February and expects the car maker to have come forward with proposals or action by then, the paper reported.
Two people have died from flu in the central Vysočina region last week, according to health officials. The number of those suffering flue is now reported to be at epidemic levels in the Třebič and Žd’ar nad Sázavou areas where the number of cases has risen by around 10 percent in the last weeks. The hospital in Třebič has been closed to new cases because of the workload. The number with the illness now totals around 7,500 in the region.
One of Prague’s landmark hotels is changing hands. The US investment company Blackstone has sold the Hilton Prague Old Town to Singapore based M&L Hospitality Trust. The news was given by the consultancy company JLL, which helped Blackstone with the transaction. The five star hotel is located not far from Náměstí Republiky and has just over 300 rooms. Blackstone acquired the hotel in 2007. The Hilton names is used for another hotel on the banks of the Vltava river in Prague but is not affected by the latest sale.
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