Daily news summary News

05-10-2004

PM in favour of further EU integration

During talks with EC and European Parliament officials in Brussels, Czech Prime Minister Stanislav Gross expressed support for further EU integration. He said that the Continent would benefit from a unification of the criminal code and judiciary and spoke in favour of further EU expansion on the condition that it did not violate the integrity of the union. Asked whether his country would welcome the idea of holding a national referendum on Turkey's accession to the EU, Mr. Gross said he thought Ankara should be given the same conditions for entry as other EU members. To do otherwise would be unfair, the Czech Prime Minister noted.

Jarab resigns as human rights commissioner

The government's human rights commissioner Jan Jarab has resigned from his post. Mr. Jarab confirmed that he had sent a letter of resignation to the Prime Minister but refused to discuss his decision, until he has the Prime Minister's response. Mr. Jarab is said to have received an offer to join the team of the Czech EU commissioner for labour and social affairs Vladimir Spidla. Asked about his future plans, Mr. Jarab said he would apply his experience to the same sphere - helping socially weak and discriminated groups of the population.

Chinese illegal immigrants detained

Fifty Chinese illegal immigrants were discovered in the back of a truck at a Czech-German border crossing on Tuesday. A border police spokeswoman said the immigrants, who possessed no documents, would probably be taken to a Czech asylum centre. The lorry driver is being questioned. Last month Czech and Slovak border police detained a group of 80 Chinese illegal immigrants some of whom later admitted to having been part of a 500 member group that allegedly split up in Moscow to try to reach Germany, France and Italy illegally.

Horni Benesov to honour John Kerry

The Czech village of Horni Benesov has decided to award US Democrat presidential candidate John Kerry honorary citizenship as his ancestors hailed from the small mountain village. Kerry's great grandparents, Benedikt and Matilda Kohn and his grandfather Fritz Kohn lived in Horni Benesov before emigrating to the United States at the beginning of the 20th century. "We are proud to have such a connection with a US presidential candidate and we want to show that someone whose ancestors came from a small mountain village can go on to achieve great things" the town's mayor said.

Weather:

Wednesday is expected to be another warm and sunny day with afternoon highs between 20 and 24 degrees Celsius.

05-10-2004