The biggest museum of aviation in the Czech Republic opened in Mladá Boleslav on Sunday. It has a collection of 25 historical planes and is named after Metoděj Vlach, who built the first Czech plane – powered by a car motor – in the town in 1912. The museum’s construction took three years and cost the Central Bohemia region over CZK 170 million.
The Agrofert group, which is owned by the minister of finance, Andrej Babiš, has lost a CZK 20 billion court battle with the Polish company PKN Orlen, the weekly Euro has reported. Agrofert was demanding compensation for alleged breach of contract. The two companies had worked together ahead of the privatisation of Czech state company Unipetrol before, Agrofert says, PKN Orlen went back on a pledge to sell it controlling stakes in daughter companies of Unipetrol at an advantageous price. Agrofert says it may appeal the ruling.
ANO would come first in general elections with 29 percent of the vote, suggests an opinion poll conducted by the TNS Aisa agency for Czech Television. The survey, carried out at the turn of this month, indicates ANO would finish way ahead of their current coalition partners the Social Democrats, who would get 19.5 percent. The poll, published on Czech TV on Sunday, found the Communists would get 13.5 percent while the right-wing parties TOP 09 and the Civic Democrats would receive 9 percent. A recent survey by Median produced rather different results, suggesting ANO and the Social Democrats would both get 21.5 percent.
Plans have been announced for events in Prague linked to the Ice Hockey World Championships, which takes place in the city and in Ostrava first half of next month. A fan zone with screens and refreshments will be created by the main venue, Prague’s O2 Arena, while there will also be a big screen on Old Town Square. The capital’s transport authority will boost services near the O2 Arena during the championships, which will run from May 1 to 17.
The leader of the opposition Civic Democrats has strongly criticised the Czech Republic’s approach to foreign policy. Petr Fiala told a party conference that the president and individual ministers were delivering conflicting messages on the Ukraine crisis and other issues. He said the country could not afford its current unclear foreign policy, which was unsettling to allies. Mr. Fiala said Czech policy should be based on the Euro-Atlantic alliance, a foundation that must not be questioned.
Sparta edge Slavia in 283rd Prague derby
Sparta Prague beat traditional foes Slavia Prague 2:1 in a Czech soccer league game at a sold-out Letná Stadium on Saturday evening. The home side fell behind in the fourth minute before equalising in the middle of the second half and bagging the winner with only one minute of regular time remaining. The victory – in the 283rd Prague derby – brings defending champions Sparta, who are second in the table, closer to leaders Viktoria Plzeň.
Veteran singer Karel Gott was named Absolute Winner at the annual TýTý television awards in Prague on Saturday night. The 75-year-old also picked up the Singer of the Year gong. Programme of the Year was Všechnopárty, with the show’s Karel Šíp also taking the Entertainer of the Year award. Czech Television’s First Republic received the Series of the Year prize. The TýTý television awards are voted on by readers of the magazines Týdeník Televize and TV Max.
An exhibition featuring the photographs of 95-year-old twins has opened at Prague’s Leica Gallery. Staša Fleischmannová and Olga Housková opened the first photo studio in the city in the famous Topič building on Národní St. in 1939. During their careers, the pair took portraits of numerous important figures, such as Boris Pasternak, Andre Breton and Karel Čapek. The women attended the opening of the exhibition.
Temperatures in the Czech Republic should reach up to 20 degrees Celsius over the next four weeks, with sub-zero temperatures at night not expected, according to a regular medium-term forecast issued by the Czech Hydro-meteorological Institute on Saturday. The second half of April is likely to be warmer than the first half of May, the forecasters said.
The Czech state has formally apologised to three former Civic Democrat MPs for their prosecution and remand. The Ministry of Justice on Saturday sent the apologies to Marek Šnajdr, Ivan Fuksa and Petr Tluchoř as well as media outlets. The three had been accused of taking bribes in the form of lucrative posts at semi-state companies in exchange for not bringing down a government headed by Petr Necaš of the Civic Democrats. However, a court ruled they could not be prosecuted as they had parliamentary immunity. Their arrest and that of Mr. Necaš’s then chief aide and now wife helped bring down his cabinet in 2013. The ex-politicians also received hundreds of thousands of crowns in financial compensation.