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Chancellor Merkel says no agreement with Czech Republic on returning refugees

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has confirmed that no agreement was reached with the Czech Republic and Hungary on negotiating a deal that the two countries would take back asylum seekers from Germany. Merkel said she regretted the confusion that had arisen regarding possible future negotiations on the issue.

Both the Czech Republic and Hungary heatedly denied media reports that they were open to talks on such an agreement. Prime Minister Andrej Babiš said Chancellor Merkel had not brought up the subject and he would, in any case, never consent to an agreement that would mean accepting any number of illegal refugees.

Under the EU’s Dublin convention asylum seekers must lodge their requests in the first EU country they set foot in.

Sokol gathering starts in Prague

The 16th all-Sokol slet (gathering) began in Prague on Sunday with a parade bringing together more than 15,000 members from the Czech physical fitness organisation the world over.

The gathering, held to commemorate the centenary of the birth of Czechoslovakia will include numerous events, calisthenics performances, exhibitions and a performance at the National Theatre in Prague. It will run until July 6th.

Sokol (falcon) was founded in 1862 to promote an active way of life, exercise and fair play as well as a commitment to values such as democracy and humanism. It survived adverse historical periods such as the two world wars and communism and the gatherings in Prague now take place every six years. -

Žatec fails to make UNESCO World Heritage Sites list

Žatec, a hop-growing town in North Bohemia, has failed to get on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, but it has been encouraged by the respective committee assessing nominations to try again and broaden the arguments in favour of its nomination.

The candidacy was submitted in January of last year and based on the town’s specialization in processing of hops.

The Czech Republic has 12 listings on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, among them the historic centre of Prague, Telč, Český Krumlov,Litomyšl Castle, the Villa Tugenhadt in Brno and most recently, in 2003, the Jewish Quarter in Třebíč.

Karlovy Vary Film Festival to screen Parting Glass and Cradle will Rock

The Karlovy Vary International Film Festival will welcome the American director and producer Richard Linklater on Sunday, as part of a tribute dedicated to the Austin Film Society, a non-profit initiative supporting local filmmaking that Linklater founded in 1985.

Actress Anna Paquin and director Stephen Moyer will attend the screening of their film Parting Glass and Tim Robbins will introduce his 1999 historical drama Cradle Will Rock.

Pearl Jam to perform in Prague

The American rock band Pearl Jam will perform at Prague’s O2 Arena on Sunday night.The concert is part of the group's European summer tour.

The band which boasts over 85 million albums sold worldwide and a 2017 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has performed in Prague on five previous occasions, most recently in 2012.

Petra Kvitová back as Czech top seed

Kvitová is back as the Czech top seed on the WTA ladder. Kvitová now ranks seventh place where she replaced Karolína Plíšková after the latter crashed out of Eastbourne. Plíšsková dropped to eighth place.

Kvitová has claimed five titles in 2018, two on hard courts, two on clay and one on grass, in Birmingham last weekend.

Weather forecast

Monday should be clear to partly coudy with day temperatures between 19 and 23 degrees Celsius.