Daily news summary News

02-07-2006

Paroubek to reconsider his resignation

The outgoing prime minister, Jiri Paroubek, told Czech TV that he would reconsider handing in his resignation on Monday, which would trigger the fall of his cabinet. Mr. Paroubek said that he had intended to open the way for a new administration but since President Klaus had made it clear that he would not accept the resignation at this stage it would be an empty gesture. The prime minister said he would leave the decision in the hands of his cabinet. The political stalemate following June's inconclusive general elections has complicated talks on a future government set-up.

Local floods -update

The situation in most flooded areas of the country has now stabilized and clean-up operations are underway. Only a few villages along the river Dyje are threatened by rising water levels due to a dam having burst in neighbouring Austria. Close to a hundred people had to be evacuated from villages in the south-east of the country and there is damage to farm crops and roads. The full extent of the damage is not yet known.

First gays tie the knot

The first same-sex marriages in Central Europe took place at registry offices across the Czech Republic over the weekend as gay and lesbian couples took advantage of a long awaited law on same-sex partnerships. The new law, which took effect on July 1st, gives gay and lesbian couples some of the advantages of a traditional marriage: inheritance rights, the right to be informed about the other's health and the right to raise children, although they cannot adopt them. It has taken seven years of lobbying to get this legislation approved and the Czech Republic is the first post-communist country to legalize gay marriage.

All-Sokol meeting in Prague

The Sokol /or Falcon/ athletics body -a physical exercise organization founded in 1862 during the Czech national revival - is holding its 14th all-Sokol meeting at Prague's Strahov stadium this week. Some 18 thousand gymnasts of all ages from all over the world are take part. The Sokol athletics body is one of the oldest organizations in the world. Its modern era began with its revival after the fall of communism but even during the dark period of Czech history ex-pats around the world kept its spirit alive. The all-Sokol meeting takes place once in six years.

Karlovy Vary International Film Festival underway

The 41st Karlovy Vary International Film Festival is underway in the west Bohemian spa town. A total of 230 films and documentaries will be presented at the festival, which opened on Friday night with the world premiere of Korean director Kim Ki-Duk's latest work, "Time." American actor Andy Garcia presented his first film as director at the Karlovy Vary Festival on Saturday. He said "Lost City" set in his homeland Cuba, was not a political manifesto but "a homage to Cuban music and culture". "I consider this film the work of my life" Garcia said after receiving the festival's Crystal Globe award during the opening ceremony.

Weather:

The next few days should bring sunny skies and day temperatures between 26 and 28 degrees Celsius.

02-07-2006