The Czech Republic has been elected to the UNESCO Executive Council at the 32nd session of the UNESCO General Conference to replace half of the 58 council members. The Czech Republic will be represented in the council by senator Jaroslava Moserova who also chairs the Czech UNESCO commission and who was chairwoman of the UNESCO General Conference between 1999 and 2001. Mrs. Moserova said earlier that she would like to work on the human rights committee. The election of the Czech Republic to the UNESCO Executive Council is seen as an evidence of the country's good position in the organisation.
Nearly 5,000 Czech police stormed more than 400 brothels on Friday night in the biggest strike against the sex slave trade in the country. They checked documents of over 4,000 people, nearly half of them foreigners and charged 21 people, mostly with pimping and trafficking women. Interior Minister Stanislav Gross said the raids across the country were in response to growing criticism, both at home and abroad, that police were doing little to contain the illegal sex trade. He said foreign women detained in the raids would be given a chance to win residency permits if they co-operated with police. The Czech Republic has become a transit point and also destination for large numbers of sexual workers from other east European former Communist countries. Most women checked in the raids came from the Balkans and from countries further to the east of Europe like Ukraine or Moldova.
Former Czech President Vaclav Havel has received the St George Prize, awarded by the Polish Catholic weekly Tygodnik Powszechny. Havel is the first Czech to receive the prize. Also awarded was Polish journalist, human rights promoter and a friend of Mr. Havel's, Adam Michnik. The prize goes every year to personalities who act for the general benefit. Established in 1945, Tygodnik Powsechny is the oldest independent weekly in the former eastern bloc countries.
Czech Police have arrested Slovak businessman Patrik Pachinger, who has been accused of fraud in his country and applied for political asylum in the Czech Republic. Pachinger was arrested in a refugee camp in north Moravia, at the request of Slovak authorities. It is up to the court to decide whether he will be extradited. Slovak authorities issued an international arrest warrant for Pachinger on Thursday. He and two other men have been charged with large-scale fraud and asset stripping. They deny the charges and claim that the prosecution is politically motivated.
Football - The Czech Republic beat Austria 2-0 in a Group Three qualifier for Euro 2004 under-21 championship. The scorers were Kolar and Sverkos.
We are expecting a partially cloudy day with the highest daytime temperatures ranging from 9 to 13 degrees Celsius. In the northeastern mountainous parts of the country, it should be overcast with scattered show showers and temperatures around four degrees Celsius.
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Screenshot: a hybrid English-friendly Prague art-house cinema where screenings are events