Daily news summary Daily news summary

03-05-2018

Czech court turns down appeal from alleged Russian hacker

The Supreme Administrative Court has turned down a complaint by alleged Russian hacker Yevgeniy Nikulin that he was wrongly refused asylum in the Czech Republic and extradited to the United States to face charges.

The court ruled that as a Russian extradition could not be blocked to a third country and that would have amounted to an infringement of international law.

Nikulin was seized in Prague in 2016 with both Russian and US authorities calling for him to be handed over. US authorities said that he had hacked social and corporate sites in the country.

Czech justice minister Robert Pelikan eventually decided to extradite Nikulin to the US, a move that was attacked by Czech president Miloš Zeman.

European Commission sees Czech 2018 economic growth at 3.4 percent

The European Commission has predicted a slowdown in the Czech economy. The Commission’s Spring forecast sees GDP growth falling to 3.4 percent this year and to 3.1 percent in 2019. In 2017 Czech economic growth was above initial expectations at 4.4 percent.

This year’s Commission forecast is nonetheless an increase on February’s figure of 3.2 percent. The main motor of growth is expected to be buoyant domestic demand.

Czech arms group Excalibar lands Ukraine arms contract

Czech arms company Excalibar Army has landed a significant contract to deliver armoured cars and self-propelled guns to the Ukraine army, according to the business daily E15.

The contract is the first major arms deal with Ukraine since the annexation of Crimea by Russia and conflict in the east of the county, the paper added.

The Czech company will cooperate in the contract with the Polish firm Wtorplast, which is also involved in the arms trade.

Prague cardinal Duka to step in for Pope

Prague cardinal Dominik Duka has been named the Pope’s legate to represent him at celebrations to mark the 1050th anniversary of the first bishopric on Polish territory.

The celebrations are due to take place at Poznan between June 22 and 24. The Poznan diocese was created in 968 under the direct control of the papacy. The first bishop of Poznan could have come from Bohemia.

Fourteen injured in Czech train collision

Fourteen people were injured when two passenger trains collided on track near Český Krumlov. Emergency helicopters attended the scene.

Around 50 passengers were on board the trains, according to police.

Damage to the trains is estimated at around 6.0 million crowns.

The around 80-kilometre stretch of line between České Budějovice and Černy Kříž is expected to remain closed into the mid-afternoon.

Over 250 Prague health workers vaccinated against measles

More than 250 health care workers in Prague have been vaccinated against measles due to the increased incidence of the disease. Hundreds of others are to undergo vaccination in the near future.

Over 100 cases of measles have been registered in the Czech Republic since the beginning of the year, mainly in Prague and Central Bohemia. In the previous years, there were only isolated cases of this highly contagious disease.

The increased incidence of measles is put down to a growing fear of vaccinations on the part of some parents who put off getting their children vaccinated for as long as possible.

Experts to address ways to counter disinformation campaigns

Experts from Europe and the US will be discussing ways to counter disinformation campaigns against Western countries at a conference in Prague on Thursday.

The Stratcom Summit is organised by the European Values think tank and Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies and aims to contribute to improving existing policies against disinformation campaigns.

Among the participants at the conference, will be the chairman of the NATO Military Committee General Petr Pavel.

Weather

The weather Friday is expected to be cloudy with sunny intervals. Top daytime temperatures will range between 19 and 24 degrees Celsius.

03-05-2018