Daily news summary News

17-06-2006

Czechs lose second World Cup group game

The Czech Republic have been beaten 2:0 by Ghana in their second group game at the football World Cup in Germany. The Czechs conceded the first goal within minutes of the kick-off, and were put under great pressure when defender Tomas Ufalujsi was sent off after 65 minutes. Despite a brilliant performance by goalkeeper Petr Cech, Ghana managed to seal their victory with a second goal ten minutes before the end. The Czech Republic's last group match is against Italy on Thursday.

Absorption ability should not be condition for further EU enlargement: Svoboda

The Czech foreign minister, Cyril Svoboda, says the European Union's ability to absorb more countries should not be a condition for further enlargement. Speaking after an EU summit in Brussels, the minister said by absorption ability he meant the question of whether present members can afford the accession of other countries, and whether they could defend further enlargement in their own parliaments. Mr Svoboda called for the doors to enlargement to be "opened fully".

On the issue of ratification of the stalled EU constitution, Minister Svoboda said the process should not continue, given that the document had been rejected by French and Dutch voters. Fifteen EU states have ratified the constitution, while a number of others - including the Czech Republic - have put the issue on hold.

Poll: Most Czechs do not think state should do more for Romanies

Three-quarters of Czechs do not think the Czech Republic should give more attention to the rights of the Roma minority, suggests a poll by the STEM agency. Over two-thirds of respondents said they had a "negative relationship" towards Romanies, while one third said they would be completely opposed to having a Romany neighbour. Roma in the Czech Republic complain of constant discrimination; they have higher rates of unemployment and lower rates of education.

First lady of Czech jazz Vlasta Pruchova dies at 79

The jazz singer Vlasta Pruchova has died at the age of 79. Known as the first lady of Czech jazz, she was actually born in Ruzomberok in Slovakia. In a career spanning over half a century, she appeared with many of the country's leading groups and orchestras. Her late husband Jan Hammer - a cardiologist by profession - also played jazz, while their son Jan Hammer is an internationally famous musician.

Civic Democrat head Topolanek investigated after TV stunt

The police are investigating Civic Democrat leader Mirek Topolanek, after he presented several wads of what looked like banknotes on a TV debate programme, the website aktualne.cz reports. He put the wads on the table in an attempt to highlight alleged corruption involving the Social Democrats, whose leader Jiri Paroubek he was debating. Mr Topolanek is now being investigated on suspicion of counterfeiting, aktualne says.

Prague museums open doors till midnight

Prague's museums are opening their doors to the public free of charge from 5pm to midnight on Saturday, as part of the annual "museum night". Twenty-one institutions are taking part in the event, which has been organised by the National Museum. Prague's transport authority is laying on extra buses for visitors.

Temperature records broken Friday

Temperature records were broken in Prague and elsewhere in the country on Friday. The Clementinum weather station in the centre of the capital measured a temperature of 32.4 degrees Celsius, making Friday the hottest June 16th in Prague in 40 years. Meanwhile, Ceske Budejovice in south Bohemia saw a record temperature of 31.9 degrees Celsius.

Weather

As for the weather in the next few days, it should be cloudy with some sunny spells and temperatures of up to 30 degrees Celsius.

17-06-2006