Czech Interior Minister Stanislav Gross said that border checks and conditions for granting visas to citizens from risk countries would be tightened in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Madrid on Thursday for which the international terrorist network Al-Qaeda claimed responsibility. Mr. Gross said that the police would start using dogs in street patrols capable of detecting explosives. He added however that the secret services had no indications of a terrorist attack being prepared against the Czech Republic. Mr. Gross also said that people from his ministry and the secret services would meet more frequently to assess gathered intelligence. Mr. Gross has also called on the public to show comprehension for the tightened security measures and to try to cooperate with security forces.
Disputes over a series of bills aimed at fighting tax evasions threaten to break the governing coalition. They include the introduction of property declarations obligatory for people with income over a certain level, labelling of alcohol, and cash registers. The senior coalition partner, the Social Democrats, want the push the new laws through regardless of the opinion of the two smaller parties. The Freedom Union and the Christian Democrats say the bills go too far in some respects and want them revised to comply with the government manifesto, otherwise, they threaten to leave the coalition. The opposition Communist party said on Sunday it was ready to vote for the Social Democrat version in Parliament.
The police have arrested more than 20 neo-Nazi skinheads in the northern town of Most and charged them with promoting an ideology aimed at suppression of human rights and freedoms. Some 50 skinheads marched through Most with lit torches, chanting Nazi slogans, to mark the 66th anniversary of the German annexation of Austria. The group was heading for a housing estate inhabited mainly by Romanies. The police seized knives, iron rods and telescopic truncheons from the skinheads.
The Prague Civic Institute has won the Templeton Freedom Award. The institute is one of fifteen organisations that the U.S. Atlas Economic Research Foundation selected out of 140 nominees from more than 50 countries. The Civic Institute, established in 1991, is a non-profit, non-governmental educational institution with a conservative orientation with Christian-democratic background. Since 1981, the Atlas foundation has supported independent organisations which promote the ideals of freedom. It cooperates with almost 300 institutions from 67 countries.
We are expecting a warm but cloudy day with scattered rain showers in the north and north-west of the country. The highest daytime temperatures should range from 10 to 14 degrees Celsius.
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