Daily news summary News of Radio Prague

17-02-2004

Spidla: not ruling out reciprocal measures against Dutch workers

Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla has said his country has not ruled out introducing reciprocal measures against the Netherlands after the Dutch government announced it would limit the number of workers from new European Union countries. Mr Spidla, speaking at the beginning of a two-day visit to Germany, said his government would take whatever measures would be deemed appropriate to deal with the situation. The Netherlands made the surprise announcement last week, going back on previous promises that it would not restrict access to its labour market after enlargement. Most of the 15 current EU members have now said they will introduce labour restrictions when 10 new countries join on May 1st.

Spidla to meet Schroeder in Berlin

Meanwhile Mr Spidla began his two-day visit to Germany on Tuesday by meeting the Brandenburg state premier Matthias Placzke in Berlin. Later he was due to hold talks with the German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and deliver a lecture on European integration. Germany is also reserving the right to restrict access to Czech workers from May 1st for up to seven years.

Ostrava police charge hit-and-run tram driver

Police in the North Moravian city of Ostrava have charged a tram driver involved in a hit-and-run accident on Monday in which a 64-year-old pedestrian was killed. The driver is accused of continuing on his route after the accident, leaving the man to die in the road. The driver has been charged with grievous bodily harm and failing to provide assistance, and has been suspended from duty. Eyewitnesses say the victim was sitting in the road when he was struck by the tram.

Border police launch hunt for "escaped Belgian convict"

Meanwhile police in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary say they are searching for the driver of a BMW car which sped across two international borders without stopping. The car, which bore Belgian licence plates, sped through the Czech-Slovak border on Monday evening and the Slovak-Hungarian border on Tuesday morning. A Hungarian police spokesman said the man was apparently a Belgian convict who had escaped from prison in the Czech Republic.

One year after leaving office, Havel launches website

One year after leaving office, former President Vaclav Havel has launched his own website. The website - www.vaclavhavel.cz - contains the former president's speeches, forthcoming appointments and biography. The site also features details of Mr Havel's awards and a list of his literary work.

Weather

Wednesday will be a cold and cloudy day, with occasional snow showers. Temperatures in the daytime will reach a maximum of 3 degrees Celsius, falling to lows of -4 degrees in places. Temperatures at night will fall to lows of -6 degrees.

17-02-2004