A week of activities aimed at promoting the Czech Republic has got underway in New York. Among the events due to take place are a presentation of the Czech Republic as a destination for tourism, a seminar for potential investors, and a show featuring the work of around a dozen fashion designers. The centre of activities is the Bohemian National Hall on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Members of the Czech international soccer team will be among the guests at a gathering there next Saturday; the players are in America for friendly games against the US and Turkey.
A girl of 14 was killed when she was hit by a car taking part in an amateur road rally near the central Bohemian town of Beroun on Saturday. The accident occurred when the car went off the course shortly after noon. The girl was killed instantly. No other spectators were injured, the police said. Last year three people were killed when a rally car hit a group of spectators in south Moravia. Other such deaths occurred in previous years.
A Vietnamese man committed suicide after killing a compatriot in the north-western town of Kadaň on Saturday morning. The killer also attacked and severely injured a Vietnamese woman, police said. The incident took place in a shop rented by the two victims. After carrying out the attack the man set himself on fire and stabbed himself, dying of his injuries. Police said they were trying to establish a motive for the crime.
Around 450,000 people have so far visited the Czech Republic’s pavilion at the Expo 2010 fair in China’s Shanghai. One in every five people who have been to the Expo since it opened its doors two weeks ago have entered the Czech pavilion, spokesman Jiří Potužník told the Czech News Agency. Mr Potužník said other countries had expressed envy of the Czech Republic’s high attendance figures.
Czech Radio opened its doors to the general public on Saturday for its annual open day. Visitors enjoyed a rare opportunity to see the station’s studio building on Římská St, as well as the adjoining historic Czech Radio building on Vinohradská St, which has mostly been reopened after an extensive renovation job. The open day was part of a Celebration of Prague day organised by the city authorities.
Irena Moozova’s term as head of the European Commission’s mission in the Czech Republic ended on Saturday. A lawyer and diplomat, Ms Moozova had been in the post since October 2006. She was previously a member of the Czech mission at UNESCO. It is not yet clear who will succeed her as head of the EC’s mission in Prague.
Lucie Šafářová has failed to reach the final of tennis’s Madrid Open after she retired in a semi-final clash with Aravane Rezai of France on Saturday. Šafářová, who is 23, had lost the first set 1-6 when she decided she could not go on. The Czech’s ranking climbed to the top 30 for the first time since January 2008 this week after a solid clay-court season, and she had been hoping to reach her second final this year.
The Czech javelin thrower Barbora Špotáková finished second in the first ever Diamond League athletics meeting in Doha on Friday evening. Špotáková’s best throw was 67.33 metres, leaving her just over a metre and a half behind Russia’s Maria Abakumova. It was the longest throw the Czech has ever managed at her first meeting of the season. Špotáková, who holds the women’s javelin world record as well as Olympic gold, said she was pleased with the result, considering she is still recovering from a problem with her Achilles tendon.
The retired soccer star Pavel Nedvěd may return to the Italian club Juventus as a youth coach, Tuttosport reported. Nedvěd’s agent was quoted by the Italian newspaper as saying the Czech’s return to Juve had been made possible by the appointment of Andrea Agnelli as club president. Agnelli, with whom Nedvěd enjoys close personal ties, takes over on Monday. The former midfielder spent eight years at the Italian giant before retiring last year at the age of 36. In 2003 he became only the second Czech to win the European Footballer of the Year award.
The results of mock elections held in 135 schools around the country indicate that young people favour right wing parties. The most popular party with the 15- to 19-year-olds who took part was TOP09, followed by the Civic Democrats and the Public Affairs party. The Czech Pirate Party – which is against copyright protection – and the far-right Workers’ Party of Social Justice would likewise secure several seats in Parliament, while the Green Party and the Social Democrats would only cross the 5 percent threshold by a very narrow margin. Turnout was 50 percent with more than 20,000 young people taking part. The mock election was organised by the NGO People in Need.