Cyclists will be banned from pedestrian routes in the city centre as of
April 1, according to information released by the Transport office at City
Hall of Prague 1. The ban on bikes along such routes will be from 10 am to
Some of the streets affected include 28. října, Na Příkopě and the Old Town Square. The district of Prague 7 has come out against as has the NGO Automat which is organising a petition.
In order to enforce the ban, Prague 1 has to strike down an exception for cyclists in place until now; one reason it is seeking the change is because of greater danger posed to pedestrians also by other electric two-wheeled vehicles which came into use after Segway vehicles were banned.
MPs from ANO, the Social Democrats, Freedom and Democracy and the Communist
Party passed a motion in the lower house Tuesday not to vote on the lifting
of immunity for Prime Minister Andrej Babiš of ANO and his senior party
colleague Jaroslav Faltýnek so they can face charges in connection with
the Stork’s Nest affair.
Former interior minister Milan Chovanec told the media the Social Democrats first wanted to resolve Tuesday’s vote of confidence which the minority government of ANO ministers and experts failed. The minority government received no support from any other party in the chamber and could therefore only count on 78 votes – well short of the minimum 101 needed. 117 MPs voted against.
The government is to tender its resignation; President Miloš Zeman has long telegraphed that he will give ANO leader Andrej Babiš, as the leader of election winners ANO, a second chance at forming a viable government. Mr Babiš signalled earlier he preferred a minority cabinet while the president has pushed for him to form a broader coalition to secure a majority.
An exhibition entitled Mummies of the World will open in Prague’s
Holešovice on February 1. It will continue until the end of June.
The mummies come from museums and private collections and will be exhibited together with artefacts from Egypt, Europe and South and North America.
The show will take up some 2,000 square metres of exhibition space, organizers revealed.
Six Czechs who were arrested in the Kazakh capital of Astana in November of
last year for disorderly conduct and fined roughly 60 euros have met up
with actor Sacha Baron Cohen in London.
Baron Cohen is the creator of the fictional character Borat, who was emulated by the Czechs who wore his trademark neon green mankini.
The actor wrote on facebook that he met his Czech mates and had had a beer with them. The actor covered their Astana fine.
Police have reported an accident on the main motorway between Prague and
Brno in which more than 10 trucks and two cars were involved, according to
Police said at least one person was injured in the accident.
Snowfall and high winds have complicated traffic in the area with the motorway blocked in both directions at some stages. Drifts have also blocked traffic on side roads.
Czechs are marking the 49th anniversary of the death of student Jan Palach who set himself on fire on January 16, 1969, in protest to the growing public apathy to the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia. He died three days later; he was just 20 years old. A number of events were scheduled to honour his memory and sacrifice including a memorial ceremony at the Philosophy Faculty at Charles University on Tuesday afternoon.
Vote on immunity postponed
MPs were due to vote on Tuesday afternoon on whether to allow the police to press criminal charges against the prime minister and his deputy for the abuse of EU funds in connection with the Stork’s Nest complex. In the end, the decision was pushed onto the backburner. Mr. Babiš and Mr. Faltýnek had made the call for immunity to be lifted.
The prime minister has consistently denied any wrongdoing and said the affair was intended to force him out of politics. The previous Chamber of Deputies had stripped the pair of their immunity, also on their request, but they regained it with re-election in October. The prime minister and his close associate are accused of misusing 50 million crowns of EU funding for Stork’s Nest, a conference centre and farm south of Prague. On Tuesday Mr. Babiš sharply criticised a report on the matter produced by the European Anti-Fraud Office, known as OLAF.
The two candidates for the post of Czech president have not yet reached
agreement on the number of television debates they will take part in before
the second round of voting. Incumbent Miloš Zeman has proposed four on-air
discussions, on the stations Nova, Barrandov, Prima and Czech Television.
However, his challenger Jiří Drahoš told Radio Impuls on Tuesday he would only participate in two debates, the number suggested by the president himself after Saturday’s first round vote count. He said he didn’t have time to take part in more because of his campaign schedule.
Mr. Zeman won 38.6 percent of the vote in the opening round, ahead of Mr. Drahoš on 26.6 percent. However, the latter has the backing of a number of defeated first round candidates. The run-off takes place on January 26 and 27.
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