The Czech National Archive has taken possession of recently discovered film
and audio recordings of the 1950s show trial of Rudolf Slánský and
others. Since being found the materials had been looked after by the
National Film Archive. The NFA comes under the Ministry of Culture, which
had promised to apply for government funding for their care.
A spokesperson for the National Archive (which comes under the Ministry of the Interior) said however that it should oversee the recordings under Czech law.
The valuable materials were uncovered by chance by insolvency administrators at a factory in Central Bohemia.
The spokesman for President Miloš Zeman, Jiří Ovčáček, should quit
over his comments on Twitter, says the president of the Czech
Constitutional Court, Rychetský. Speaking in an interview published by the
news site iDnes.cz, Mr. Rychetský said Mr. Ovčáček’s position gave
him no right whatever to express any opinions on the courts, domestic
politics or foreign policy.
Mr. Rychetský, who served as deputy prime minister in a government headed by Mr. Zeman, also said that the now head of state had – like his predecessors – allowed himself to be surrounded by yes men.
Saturday is the day of the year when Czechs have made enough money to pay
their tax obligations this year and begin earning for themselves, according
to the calculations of accounting firm Deloitte. It says it took the
country 174 days to reach the 2018 “tax freedom day”.
According to Deloitte, that day has never come so late in the year for Czechs. Another organisation, the Liberal Institute, uses different calculations and declared “tax freedom day” on May 22.
The leader of the Social Democrats, Jan Hamáček, says he could
temporarily also serve as minister of foreign affairs in a coalition his
party is planning with ANO. ANO are opposed to the Social Democrats’
nominee for the foreign affairs portfolio, Miroslav Poche.
Mr. Hamáček, who is in line to serve as interior minister in the Communist-supported two-party minority government, made the comments after President Miloš Zeman – who is also opposed to his candidature – asked Mr. Poche to step aside during a meeting on Friday.
ANO leader Andrej Babiš says he would have no problem with Social Democrats’ chairman Hamáček holding two ministerial posts for a limited period.
Mr. Babiš has said that the prospective coalition could undergo a vote of confidence in the lower house on July 11.
The names of several new key cabinet members put forth by the ANO party of
Prime Minister-designate Andrej Babiš have been leaked to the media.
The new Defence Minister is Lubomír Metnar, the current interior minister. He replaces Karla Šlechtová, who had highlighted alleged irregularities in many military contracts.
The incoming Justice Minister is Taťána Malá, an MP who has advocated postponing an investigation into an alleged EU subsidy fraud now dogging Mr Babiš. Some members of the Social Democrats, ANO’s coalition partner, have objected to Ms. Malá’s candidacy.
During her tenure as defence minister, Ms. Šlechtová contacted the military police after finding a number of alleged irregularities in a deal to buy mobile radar stations from Israel for CZK 3.5 billion under an agreement reached, but not signed, by her predecessor, Martin Stropnický (ANO).
Ms. Šlechtová, an independent, had previously served as Minister for Regional Development under Mr. Babiš’s predecessor, Bohuslav Sobotka (Social Democrats).
The government has given its formal support to a draft proposal allowing
for same-sex marriages. With the cabinet’s support, the proposal, which
would require amending the Civil Code, will now go to the lower house of
Parliament for debate.
Current Czech civil law only allows for same-sex couples to have registered partnerships, an institution that would no longer be in place if same-sex marriages become legal. Thus far, 46 MPs representing six different parties in the 200-seat Chamber of Deputies have signed on to the draft proposal.
The quality of water being fed into Czech reservoirs is rapidly declining,
an expert from the Academy of Sciences told a conference in Prague on
drinking water, and in some areas is on the verge of being untreatable,
meaning it cannot be readily filtered to become potable.
Martin Pivokonský, director of the Academy’s Institute of Hydrodynamics said the biggest threat comes from rising levels of cyanobacteria and pesticides in natural water sources.
The annual “Festival of the five-petalled rose” is now underway in the
picturesque southern Bohemian town of Český Krumlov. This weekend, the
town will be transported back to the Renaissance period when under the rule
of the noble Rožmberk family.
The town’s streets and squares will be filled with the knightly tournaments, historical crafts fairs, banquets and medieval music. Among the most popular events each year is the jousting tournament, recalling a past legend about cutting roses.
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Wide range of events in store for Czechs this weekend as 30-year anniversary of Velvet Revolution reaches climax
Hundreds of thousands again gather in Prague to voice their opposition to prime minister
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