Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has come under fire for outright rejecting a proposal to take in 50 Syrian orphans – or even a single refugee until the EU secures its borders. In an interview published on Saturday, he said the Czech Republic had demonstrated its solidarity in other, meaningful ways and has its orphans to worry about.
Czech MEP Michaela Šojdrová of the Christian Democrats, has asked for a
meeting with Prime Minister Andrej Babiš to try to persuade him that the
Czech Republic should take in 50 Syrian orphans from a migrant camp in
Šojdrová, who first floated the idea, said that taking in child migrants would be a show of solidarity.
Prime Minister Babiš, who is strictly against taking in migrants, sharply rejected the idea at the weekend saying the Czech Republic was ready to help these and other orphans in their country of origin, where the migrant crisis should be resolved.
His stand elicited strong criticism from opposition parties who called it selfish and inhumane. Even his coalition partner, acting foreign minister Jan Hamáček from the Social Democrats, said a country of 10 million should be able to accommodate 50 orphans.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has come under fire on the domestic
scene for refusing to take in a group of 50 Syrian orphans. Babiš told the
daily Právo he saw no reason why the country should help Syrian orphans
when it had orphans of its own to look after.
He said the Czech Republic was showing sufficient solidarity with the countries of migrant origin by sending them money, doctors and experts.
Acting foreign minister Jan Hamáček of the Social Democrats countered that a country of 10 million could surely be able to cope with 50 Syrian orphans.
Opposition politicians from TOP 09, the Christian Democratic Party and Mayors and Independents said the prime minister’s statement was shameful and inhumane.
Starting in October, the area around Prague‘s metronome will house a large exhibition detailing the key moments in Czech totalitarian history. The project, which was instigated by a joint effort of the Prague City Hall and a grouping of historical institutes, seeks to finally unlock the previously closed network of spaces underneath what used to be Stalin’s giant statue. Yet questions remain about how the spaces are to be used in the long term.
The centrist Ano party and its junior coalition partner, the Social Democrats, have reached a framework agreement on increasing public sector salaries. While the specifics have not yet been made public, the coalition has agreed on a differentiated range of salary increases of about 8 per cent on average, with workers who now earn the least set to get the biggest raises.
State support for NGOs has been lowered by 586 million crowns as opposed to
the government’s original plan, Prime Minister Andrej Babiš told
journalists on Wednesday. There should be less money for NGOs linked to the
education sector but more for those active in the field of social services.
Overall state support for NGOs should rise year-on-year by approximately 800 million. The government is also planning lay-offs in state administration. Over 1,300 positions will be scrapped, many of which have been unfilled for some time.
The Czech prime minister, Andrej Babiš, held talks with his Italian
counterpart, Giuseppe Conte, in Rome on Tuesday. The pair discussed the
protection of the European Union’s external borders, cooperation with
third countries and migrant return policies, the Czech Office of the
Mr. Babiš and his host also spoke about the European Union’s relations with Russia and the US, as well as bilateral cooperation.
In July the Czech leader agreed to visit Rome after Mr. Conte sent an open letter in response to Mr. Babiš’s refusal of an Italian request to take in 450 migrants.
Dozens of people gathered outside the Russian embassy in Prague on Tuesday to demand the release of jailed Ukrainian film maker Oleg Sentsov and other prisoners of conscience. The gathering lasted exactly 107 minutes, symbolizing the 107 days that Sentsov has been on a hunger strike in a Siberian prison.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has said that to bring a halt to illegal migration a comprehensive action plan for the entire European Union is needed – and the Czech Republic is ready to prepare just such a proposal. To stem the tide, he has even floated the idea of the protection of EU borders being transferred to the Nato level.
The Czech prime minister, Andrej Babiš, says he does not want to accept
“even one migrant”. Speaking at an annual meeting of the country’s
top diplomats in Prague on Monday, he proposed a “Marshall Plan” for
Africa that would encourage would-be migrants to remain in their country of
Mr. Babiš called for a common European Union approach to the issue of migration but again rejected a policy of sharing out refugees among member states. He said the EU should focus more on ensuring the continent’s security.
The prime minister also said that anybody speaking about a possible Czech departure from the EU was threatening the country’s future and pointed to the fact that 83 percent of the Czech Republic’s exports were to other EU states.