Czech pensioner Jaromír Balda has confessed to cutting down trees that
landed on railroad tracks, causing two train accidents in 2017. Mr. Balda,
who is 71, told the Prague Municipal Court on Monday that he had left
leaflets at the scene bearing fake “jihadist” slogans in order to
discredit migrants, who he referred to as a “horror”.
The pensioner said that he has recovered his wits since being in jail for nearly a year and that he had not intended to hurt anyone. The case is being prosecuted as a terrorist attack and the perpetrator faces up to 15 years in prison if found guilty.
The Czech Republic absented itself from a meeting of UN representatives in
Marrakesh on Monday at which 164 states signed the Global Compact on
The Czech government announced earlier that it would withdraw from the pact citing ambiguities in its interpretation. Czech officials argue that the compact does not draw a clear line between legal and illegal migration or state that illegal migration is undesirable.
Around a dozen other countries including the US, Austria, Hungary and Poland have also refused to support the global compact.
It is generally still easier in the Czech Republic than elsewhere in the EU to hide crucial parts of corporate structures – including the ultimate beneficial owners of a business – from public scrutiny. While registering a business in a non-transparent tax haven is one way for owners to hide their identities, a growing number are taking a more brazen route: paying so-called “white horses” – often homeless people – to act as frontmen.
Elena Gorolová, a Roma social worker from the north Moravian city of Ostrava, has been included on an annual BBC list of 100 inspirational and influential women for 2018. The BBC highlighted Ms Gorolová’s campaign against forced sterilisation as well as her work to return institutionalised children to their birth families.
The Indian comedian and actor Vir Das has complained that he and his
parents were repeatedly ignored by staff at Café Café in central Prague.
He wrote on Twitter, where he has over 7.5 million followers, that they had
tried six times to get service but the café did not "really like
serving brown people".
The comedian has since deleted the Tweet in question and said he had heard from the owner of Café Café, who apologised for the behaviour of his staff. The owner told the Czech News Agency that it had been a misunderstanding rather than a racist incident.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš says he will suggest to government that the Czech Republic doesn’t sign the UN’s Global Compact for Migration, citing ambiguities in its interpretation. The decision mirrors those concluded by the Czech Republic’s central European neighbours Austria and Hungary who have already announced they will not sign the agreement.
Women in the Czech Republic earn on average 80,000 crowns less per year
than men do, Minister of Labour and Social Affairs Jana Maláčová told a
news conference convened ahead of European Equal Pay Day.
"The difference in pay for women and men is 22 percent and the second highest in the entire European Union,” she said, calling fair remuneration for women and men "a crucial economic issue".
The gap is wider in the Czech private sector than in the public sector, she said. In the EU, on average women are paid 16 percent less than men, according to Eurostat.
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