The funeral has taken place of writer and dissident Ludvík Vaculík, who died last week at the age of 88. Fellow authors Ivan Klíma and Pavel Kohout were among the 500 or so mourners at Saturday’s service in the town of Brumov-Bylnice in Eastern Moravia, his birthplace. One of the most respected post-war Czech writers, Vaculík penned the Two Thousand Words, a manifesto calling for reforms in Czechoslovakia in 1968, and books such as The Axe, The Guinea Pigs and The Czech Dreambook.
Temperatures in the coming four-week period will be around 17.5 degrees Celsisus, which is average for the time of year, according to a mid-term forecast issued on Saturday by the Czech Hydro-Meteorological Institute. Rainfall over the next month should be below the long-term average, though forecasters have warned of occasional heavy rains.
Events commemorating the 73rd anniversary of the razing of Lidice by the Nazis began on Saturday with a mass at the foundations of the Church of St. Martin where the village stood in Central Bohemia. The mass, served by Bishop Václav Malý, recalled the terrible fate of Lidice, which became a symbol of Nazi terror during WWII. Among those who attended the ceremony was the minister of culture, Daniel Herman, who said the massacre of the village’s inhabitants in 1942 was a tragedy that served as a warning against totalitarianism, evil and violence of all kinds.
The spokesman of the Supreme Court in Brno, Petr Knötig, has announced that he is to quit the post by the end of June. Mr. Knötig’s resignation follows the news that he used a derogatory term to describe members of the Roma minority on an internet forum. He was also photographed holding what he said was a replica pump action shotgun in the court building.
A court in Alexandria in the US state of Virginia on Friday heard evidence in an appeal lodged by murder suspect Kevin Dahlgren against a previous ruling allowing for his extradition to the Czech Republic, Czech Television reported. The court is due to issue a verdict in the coming days. Mr. Dahlgren is accused of murdering his cousin, her husband and their two children in Brno in May 2013 and fleeing to the US before he could be questioned by Czech police. If the court rejects his petition, his lawyers can appeal the verdict. If that move proves unsuccessful, the US Department of State will decide whether to hand Mr. Dahlgren over to the Czech authorities.
The Czech Republic’s football players were beaten 2:1 by Iceland in Reykjavik on Friday night in a qualification game for next year’s European Championship. The Czechs went ahead through Bořek Dočkal on 55 minutes but conceded two in the next 21 minutes in what was their first defeat of the campaign. The result means Iceland are now two points ahead of the Czech Republic at the top of Group A.
The 52nd Kmoch’s Kolín festival of brass band music has got underway in the Central Bohemian town. Over 40 brass groups are taking part in the weekend-long event, including ensembles from Italy, Germany, Hungary and Latvia. Running since the early 1960s, the festival is named in honour of the great locally born band leader and composer František Kmoch (1848–1912).
Members of the board of directors and the supervisory board of the ČEZ
energy group will not receive bonuses from last year's profit it was
decided at a company meeting on Friday. Shareholders decided to pay a 40
crown per share dividend before taxes, the same amount as in previous two
years, or about 21.5 billion in total, which is 73 percent of adjusted net
profit of the group for 2014, the Czech News Agency reported. The state,
which owns about 70 percent of CEZ's shares via the Finance Ministry,
will receive 15 billion. Management bonuses will not be paid for the first
time since 2001 when ČEZ launched dividend payments to its shareholders.
The Finance Ministry came up with the proposal for no rewards to be paid.
The management received 25.5 million every year since 2010. The board of
directors had proposed the same amount this year also, but the proposal was
At the same time, the board of directors can still use the share motivation programme. Within the programme, CFO Martin Novak bought 100,000 CEZ shares for 56.4million in May and then sold most of the shares, earning 6.9 million in the transaction, business daily Hospodářské noviny reported.
Thirty-eight new professors were named on Friday at a ceremony at Prague’s Carolinum - six of them women. The decrees were issued by the deputy for university studies and research, Jaromír Veber. Originally, university chancellors threatened to boycott the ceremony, after the country’s president, Miloš Zeman, refused to name three academics on the grounds they cooperated with the communist secret police in former Czechoslovakia.
Additional paratroopers from the Czech 43rd Airborne Battalion departed from Pardubice on Friday to take part in the NATO military exercise Noble Jump 2015 in neighbouring Poland. Sixty-five soldiers left in the second group, a military representative confirmed for the Czech News Agency. In all 150 Czech personnel are taking part. The first group left earlier this week.