Daily news summary Daily news summary

08-10-2019

Petříček airs concerns over possible Turkish action against Kurds

The Czech foreign minister, Tomáš Petříček, has expressed concerns over plans to move United States troops in Syria and possible military action by Turkey. President Donald Trump announced on Monday that his country’s army would leave north-eastern Syria, a move that could open the way for Turkey to attack Kurdish fighters across the border.

In a tweet Mr. Petříček said ordinary people would suffer and the situation could only be resolved politically and diplomatically. He said he hoped there would be no attempts to force refugees to move, adding that international law must be respected.

A spokesperson for President Miloš Zeman said he was analysing the situation. However, the head of the Office of the President’s international department, Rudolf Jindrák, said the Kurds could not be thrown under the bus.

Kurdish forces were US allies in defeating Islamic State in Syria. However, Turkey views the Kurdish militias that dominate the US-allied Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) as terrorists.

Babiš: V4 considering inviting Trump to Warsaw

Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš says the Visegrad Four are considering a joint invitation to Donald Trump to visit Warsaw. Mr. Babiš made the comment in an interview in daily Blesk. He said Poland was the closest ally of the US and that if he came to Warsaw the V4 leaders would like to discuss Euro-American relations, including trade deals, with the US president.

The Czech Republic now holds the presidency of the Visegrad Four, which also includes Slovakia, Poland and Hungary.

Mr. Babiš said the last time he had seen Mr. Trump, at the UN General Assembly, he had pointed out to the US leader that he had failed to mention Europe in his address.

Committee to take criminal case against ex-ministers over OKD selloff

A lower house investigative committee is to take a criminal case against a number of politicians involved in the privatisation of the OKD mining company. The move pertains to former Social Democratic Party ministers Bohuslav Sobotka and Milan Urban and to Vladimír Dlouhý and Jiří Skalický, who were ministers for the Civic Democratic Alliance. It also involves businessmen Zdeněk Bakala, Viktor Koláček and others.

Pirate Party MP Lukáš Černohorský said the committee had doubts about whether Mr. Dlouhý acted in accordance with the law when, as industry minister, he placed state-owned apartments under OKD.

The case against Mr. Sobotka, who later became prime minister, and Mr. Urban, centres on the sell-off of a minority stake in OKD in 2004.

Mr. Černohorský said the then ministers had failed to negotiate a price advantageous to the state.

Large percentage of felons with ankle tags breach rules

Up to 40 percent of felons fitted with electronic ankle tags in the Czech Republic fail to comply with the rules surrounding their usage, Czech Television reported on Tuesday. The most frequent transgressions are breaking the tags and late arrivals.

Around 10 percent of those ordered to wear the bracelets regularly break regulations.

Since the system was fully introduced in this country in September last year around 300 people have been fitted with electronic tags.

First Sokol Memorial Day being observed around Czech Republic

October 8 is the first ever Sokol Memorial Day in the Czech Republic, marking the anniversary of the order by Nazi governor Reinhard Heydrich to arrest over 1,500 members of the Czech gymnastics association. Those detained were sent to concentration camps and the organisation was banned a few days later.

An estimated 5,000 Sokols were murdered or died in battle during WWII and memorial ceremonies are being for the victims around the Czech Republic. The Sokol flag has also been hoisted over Prague City Hall.

Bohemians 1905 fire coach Martin Hašek

Bohemians 1905 football club have fired their coach Martin Hašek after two and a half years at the helm. The Czech First League side parted ways with the coach after picking up 12 points in the first 12 rounds of the season. The “Kangaroos” are currently 11th in the table.

Club officials say they will announce a replacement for Hašek, who is the brother of ex-ice hockey goaltender Dominik Hašek, in the coming days.

Weather forecast

It should be cloudy and wet in the Czech Republic on Wednesday, with temperatures of up to 12 degrees Celsius. Daytime highs are then expected to climb to around 20 degrees Celsius at the weekend.

08-10-2019