Daily news summary Daily news summary

19-02-2018

Czech president Zeman and PM Babiš discuss government negotiations

President Miloš Zeman and outgoing Prime Minister Andrej Babiš met for dinner on Sunday to discuss future negotiations to form a government. The president has already said he will task Mr Babiš with a second attempt at forming a government.

The Czech head of state is set to meet with Communist leader Vojtěch Filip and Freedom and Direct Democracy leader Tomio Okamura this week. Both of them had previously made clear they might under certain circumstances support Babiš’s new government.

On Thursday, Mr Babiš is scheduled to meet with representatives of the Mayors and Independents party, STAN. They have said they are willing to support an ANO-led government if certain conditions are met.

Head of Constitutional Court calls situation serious when Okamura can be deputy speaker

The head of the Constitutional Court Pavel Rychetský has said that the leader of the Freedom and Direct Democracy party Tomio Okamura "should not have been elected as deputy speaker of the Chamber of Deputies".

The judge made the comment in a weekly political debate program, saying “the situation was serious” when someone with Mr Okamura's views could serve in such a high post; he called Okamura’s publicly held views “truly racist and xenophobic” and in line with neo-Nazism.

A former spokesman and businessman turned politician, Mr Okamura has capitalized on an anti-migrant, anti-Islam platform. Most recently he stirred controversy by questioning conditions at the Lety concentration camp in South Bohemia during WWII where Roma where interned and suffered appalling conditions and disease and many died. Many others held there were sent on to the Auschwitz death camp.

Mr Okamura recently came second in a poll of most trusted politicians. He polled at 33 percent, behind Prime Minister Andrej Babiš at 37 percent in a survey conducted by the CVVM agency.

Sandstone boulder, which presented risk for residential buildings in Děčín, removed

Experts removed part of a sandstone cliff in Děčín, north Bohemia which had grown loose and presented a risk to two residential buildings below.

The chunk was removed only after safety fences were installed.

Only a smaller piece remained to still be taken down, a spokesman confirmed. Some 20 inhabitants should be allowed to return to their homes by Tuesday.

Police raid catches more than 50 underage drinkers at Brno establishment

A police raid at a number of bars, restaurants and discos in Brno on Friday caught more than 50 underage drinkers at a single establishment alone. Two ended up in hospital and one in a jail cell (known as a drunk tank) heavily intoxicated.

The establishment in question faces a potential fine of one million crowns and a two-year ban.

“Frozen highway” expected to open for first time this season

What has come to be known as “the frozen highway”, a long-distance route for ice skating on the Lipno reservoir on the Vltava River in south Bohemia, is expected to be opened for the first time to skaters this season. It should take place at the weekend.

The track, in the past some 11 kilometres long and six to eight metres wide, allows skaters an unparalleled experience.

Currently, the ice is reported to be some 10 centimetres thick and needs to be 18 before skating is allowed. The weather should be optimal: freezing temperatures are expected all week.

Tennis: Kvitová defeats Muguruza to win Qatar Open

In tennis, Petra Kvitová will return to the world’s top 10 after beating winning the Qatar Open tournament in Doha on Sunday.

The Czech 16th seed defeated Garbine Muguruza of Spain 3-6 6-3 6-4 and clinched her second title of 2018, after her victory in St Petersburg two weeks ago.

Weather

Cloudy conditions with some sunny periods are expected on Tuesday. Daytime temperatures should reach highs of around 1 degree Celsius.

19-02-2018