The ruling Social Democrats are planning to present the electorate with a list of four names from which to choose the party's candidate for president, Health Minister Marie Souckova said on Friday. They are former prime minister Milos Zeman, ombudsman Otakar Motejl, former justice minister Jaroslav Bures and Charles University professor Martin Potucek. It is believed that the Social Democrats decided to allow the public to pick their presidential candidate because elements within the party feared that the outspoken Mr Zeman might win an internal party vote. The public vote will take place on October 22 and 25. The term of the current president, Vaclav Havel, ends in January, and his successor will be chosen by both houses of parliament.
The opposition Civic Democratic Party have officially announced their support for independent Senate candidate Vladimir Zelezny, a television tycoon who controls the Czech Republic's most popular commercial station, Nova. The chairman of the Civic Democrats branch in Znojmo, the constituency where Mr Zelezny is running, said the party did not know of a better candidate, adding that it did not matter that the TV magnate was not from the region.
The deputy president of the Czech police Miroslav Antl could be dismissed if it is proved that he had been drinking before a traffic accident in the east Bohemian town of Pardubice on Thursday. A source told the CTK news agency that a breathalyser test proves that Mr Antl was over the limit when the crash occurred, though a police spokesperson said that the incident was still under investigation.
The car-maker Skoda is to cut production of its Fabia model by a hundred cars a day from next week, a spokesperson said on Friday. The move is being taken in reaction to the overall downturn in the car market. The company is not planning to lay off any staff at the plant in the central Bohemian town of Mlada Boleslav where the Fabia is produced.
Australian police have arrested and charged a man in connection with the abduction and rape of two young Czech women. The women, aged 22 and 26, were offered a lift at a bus stop by the man, who raped them. The suspect then locked the women in the boot of his car, from where they managed to escape six hours later. The Czech consul in Brisbane said the two young women were in Australia to study English and planned to stay in the country.
Both Saturday and Sunday should be cloudy with rain in places and temperatures of up to 13 degrees Celsius.
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