A majority of Czechs say they wouldn’t want to have drug addicts,
alcoholics, or individuals with criminal pasts as their neighbours,
according to a new poll by the CVVM agency conducted in the month of March.
Eighty-seven percent said they would not tolerate having drug addicts next
door, 73 percent said they couldn’t live next to an alcoholic, and 72
percent, next to someone with a criminal record.
Sixty-one percent said they would have an issue with living next to someone
with mental illness (a drop of nine percent compared to the previous
Thirty-one percent of those polled said they wouldn’t like to live next to a foreigner or someone with a different skin colour. More than 1,000 people took part in the survey.
The Communist Party will wait for the winners of the election last October,
ANO, to take the next step before considering possible support for an
ANO-led minority government. Talks between ANO and the Social Democrats
ended on Thursday when party representatives were unable to agree on key
posts in the new cabinet.
Communist Party leader Vojtěch Filip suggested the collapse could have been avoided, had the Communists played the role of mediator. Any ANO and Social Democrat government would still lack a majority of seats and would have to lean on the Communist Party for support in a confidence vote and in passing legislation.
According to Filip, who wants to meet with the president, the Social Democrats had demanded too much; the party is willing to continue negotiations but was equally prepared for the possibility of early elections, he said.
London football club Arsenal downed opponents CSKA Moscow on Thursday night
by a score of 4:1 in their first leg match-up in the quarterfinals of the
Europa League. Petr Čech was in goal for the Gunners, his first appearance
in the Europa League this season after the team’s designated goalkeeper
for the competition, David Ospina, suffered an ankle injury.
The second leg of the quarterfinal is in Moscow in a week’s time.
If the country’s prime minister in resignation Andrej Babiš is unable to
form a viable government, capable of getting a majority in the Chamber of
Deputies, someone else should be given the chance, Petr Fiala – the head
of the second-largest party in the lower house, the Civic Democrats – has
His words were in response to the news late Thursday that talks between Mr Babiš’ ANO and the Social Democrats on forming a minority government with tacit support from the Communists had collapsed.
Although the prime minister offered the Social Democrats five seats in the government, ANO were unwilling to let go key ministries like Finance or the Interior.
The Social Democrats had specifically asked for the Interior Ministry to balance the fact the prime minister is charged with EU subsidy fraud.
Outgoing Czech Defense Minister Karla Šlechtová on Thursday visited Czech
troops serving in Iraq, the Defense Ministry reported on its web page. The
visit was kept low profile for security reasons.
The Czech Republic currently has three military units in the country involved in training Iraqi military police, training pilots flying Czech L-159 fighter planes and anti-chemical warfare instructors.
The Czech government is due to debate Czech participation in foreign military missions next week. Minister Šlechtová has proposed increasing the number of troops serving in Iraq from the present 60 to 110 over the next two years.
The leadership of the Social Democratic Party has confirmed party leader
Jan Hamáček’s decision to end negotiations with ANO on a minority
coalition government supported by the Communists.
The talks collapsed late on Thursday over a division of government portfolios.
The Social Democrat leader decided to end the talks after ANO refused to let his party head the Interior Ministry –a demand that was to help the Social Democrats come to terms with ANO’s insistence on the cabinet being headed by Andrej Babiš who is charged with EU subsidy fraud.
The outgoing prime minister said he would request a meeting with President Miloš Zeman to discuss the situation.
Talks between the ANO party and the Social Democrats on forming a minority
coalition government supported by the Communists have failed.
The talks hit the rocks in the last phase of negotiations late on Thursday when the two sides met to agree on a division of ministerial portfolios.
The Social Democrats decided to end the talks after ANO refused to let them head the interior ministry –a demand that was to help the Social Democrats come to terms with ANO’s insistence on the cabinet being headed by Andrej Babiš who is charged with EU subsidy fraud.
Social Democrat leader Jan Hamáček said he would ask the party leadership to confirm the decision for the party to go into the opposition on Friday.
He said responsibility for the stability of the country was now in the hands of the ANO party.
Three of the country’s best-known investigative reporters claim that
there is a coordinated effort on the part of the police to discourage them
from working on sensitive cases relating to Prime Minister Andrej Babiš.
Jaroslav Kmenta from the magazine Reporter, Janek Kroupa from Czech Radio and Sabina Slonková from the news site Neovlivni.cz say that they were summoned by the police for questioning in connection with alleged leaks from police files on some of the cases they were working on.
The three say they had previously been questioned by the police on this matter and made it clear they would not name their respective sources.
In a joint proclamation issued on Thursday they say that they view these latest summons as an effort to discourage them from pursuing their investigative work.
The police have rejected claims of pressurizing the reporters in question, saying they were bound to investigate leaks from police files.
The Senate committee for expats has requested the government to consider
the repatriation of some 240 ethnic Czechs from Venezuela where they are
suffering from permanent unrest and poverty.
Millions of people in the country are now affected by a shortage of food and medicines. Of the 240 expats who have expressed a desire to return to their old homeland 146 have Czech citizenship.
There are estimated to be around 300 ethnic Czechs living in the country.
The situation is further complicated by the fact that the Czech Embassy in Caracas was closed down six years ago and such requests are now dealt with via the Czech consulate in Havana.
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