Daily news summary News of Radio Prague

05-06-2002

Havel, Rau stress strong Czech-German relations

The presidents of the Czech Republic and Germany have stressed that their countries enjoy a healthy relationship, despite an often bitter debate over the post-war reorganisation of Europe. Germany's President Johannes Rau held talks with his Czech counterpart Vaclav Havel in Prague on Wednesday, amid a dispute between Czech and German politicians over the post-war expulsion of Czechoslovakia's large ethnic German community. However President Rau warned that the political debate still had the power to hurt relations, and reverse the progress made since the fall of the Communist regime in 1989. In March, the debate prompted the German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder to cancel an official visit to Prague.

Verheugen: return of Klaus would not affect Czech EU entry

The European Union's Commissioner for Enlargement, Guenter Verheugen, has said he is sure the Czech Republic will remain on track to join the EU, even if former prime minister Vaclav Klaus returns to power. Mr Verheugen said no possible government in the Czech Republic would turn the country against European integration. Mr Klaus is accused by some of being Euro-sceptic. He denies the charges, describing himself as a Euro-realist. Public opinion polls have shown his right-of-centre Civic Democrats, whose election campaign has often had nationalist undertones, running neck and neck with the ruling Social Democrats.

Court set frees Communist-era border guard accused of shooting boy

A court in the western city of Plzen has set free a former border guard accused of shooting dead a 14-year-old boy and injuring his father as they attempted to escape from Communist Czechoslovakia in 1950. The court said there was insufficient evidence to convict Vitezslav Hoerel, one of several guards who opened fire on the two as they tried to cross the border.

Former TV presenter goes on trial for selling drugs

The popular former TV presenter Tereza Pergnerova has gone on trial for selling drugs. Ms Pergnerova, who sprung to fame presenting the children's programme Eso on Nova TV, was arrested several weeks ago and charged with selling the drug pervitine. Ms Pergnerova, who has admitted having a drug problem in the past, told reporters she would appear in court without a lawyer, saying "the truth needs no defence."

Woman jumps to death from Budejovice "Black Tower"

A 61-year-old woman fell 50 metres to her death on Wednesday after jumping off a tower in the south Bohemian city of Ceske Budejovice. The woman threw herself off the Black Tower, one of the city's main tourist attractions, shortly before noon. Police are describing the death as suicide, but are still conducting an investigation to rule out any possibility of foul play.

Weather

Finally a look at the weather. Thursday will bring cooler weather, with mostly overcast skies and showers or storms in places. Temperatures in the daytime are expected to reach highs of 22 degrees Celsius.

05-06-2002