An annual report to be discussed by the government on Thursday states says more than half of country’s Roma minority lives n social exclusion, the Czech News Agency reports. Experts estimate that as more than 113, 000 people. The Roma make up two percent of the country’s population. In some areas, such as the regions of Ústí or Moravia-Silesia, some two-thirds of Romanies are said to be socially excluded. Many who fall in this category have been pushed to the periphery of towns or cities, live in boarding houses with little opportunity to rent elsewhere, according to ČTK. Unemployment and personal debt also run high. Last year, some 67 million crowns were allotted from the state budget for integration projects, divided among the Education, Culture and Regional Development ministries. Funds were used, for example, to pay social workers and Roma coordinators.
President Miloš Zeman has made a tradition of hitting the pond in a yellow dinghy while enjoying the summer holidays near his cottage in Nové Veselí in the Ždár area, news site iDnes reported on Monday. The president’s security detail took to a second inflatable raft nearby. The daily reported that the president went out onto the water in fair but windy weather at around noon. The Vysočina region has long been a retreat for the head of state; Mr Zeman went into semi-retirement there for roughly a decade after serving as prime minister of the Czech Republic until 2002.
The U.S. is seeking permission from the Czech government to fly Global Hawk surveillance drones through Czech airspace, the daily Právo reports. The pilotless aircraft is the largest of its kind in the U.S. fleet and is reportedly to help monitor areas along the Russian border. The U.S. Embassy in Prague declined to comment but the news was confirmed by the spokesman for the Transport Ministry, says the daily. Právo adds that teams from the Interior, Defence, and Transport Ministries have met to discuss ways of accommodating the U.S. plans but suggests getting to yes won’t be easy, saying Czech and European legislation do not deal with long-distance operation of unmanned aircraft.
A group of Iraqi nationals who were brought to the Czech Republic under a programme entitled Generation 21, but who later left for Germany, are to be sent back, a court in Dresden has ruled. The German authorities had tried to send back the asylum-seekers sooner but they appealed the decision. The Czech Republic, which granted the Iraqis visas, will have to resolve the situation upon their return, the news site Novinky.cz writes.
Interior Minister Milan Chovanec has warned that the country could lose eight billion crowns in tolls for lorries next year, slamming the Transport Ministry on Monday for not resolving the situation around toll operator Kapsch. The Austrian firm’s contract runs out this year; the ministry was to have a run a tender on choosing a new firm but Transport Minister Dan Ťok is proposing the firm’s contract be prolonged without a tender for three years. The interior minister has made clear he will not back the transport minister’s plan, regarding the proposed steps taken as highly problematic and will seek an explanation. The lorry toll has been collected in the Czech Republic since 2007 on more than 1,400 kilometres of motorways and expressways.
Police conducting checks at the Vranov reservoir at the weekend found that in more than 20 cases children aboard boats did not have lifejackets even though the law requires all children up to the age of 10 to wear them. The police did not hand out fines to those captaining the vessels but let them go with a warning. The police found no discrepancies in paperwork and none of the boat captains was found to have been drinking.
French actor Jean Reno (The Big Blue, La Femme Nikita, Les Rivières pourpres) on Monday is attending the 51st Karlovy Vary International Film Festival underway in the spa town in western Bohemia. Mr Reno, the Czech News Agency reported, is currently in Prague for the filming of a new production called Adventurers, directed by Stephen Fung. On Monday, Reno is to accept the Festival President’s Award and is to present a special screening of the cult film Léon by director Luc Besson. In the 1994 film Mr Reno portrayed the title character, a hit man, in New York City.
The head of the Czech domestic spying and counter terrorism service, BIS, has asked to leave the service. Minister of Interior Milan Chovanec told reporters on Monday that Jiří Lang had made a request to leave. The timing when he will quit the post was not specified. The daily Mladá Fronta Dnes suggested that Lang will in the near future head the National Security Authority which is responsible for making sure that measures are in place to guarantee the safe operating of government and other state agencies.
The Czech truck manufacturer Tatra Trucks, owned since 2013 by Jaroslav Strnad, is making new inroads in Middle Eastern and Asian markets, looking to increase its workforce by some 200, the Czech daily iDnes reported on Monday, noting that the manufacturer wants to build 1,300 vehicles this year. In 2015, it rolled out 858. the truck producer recently signed military contracts in Egypt and Jordan, with India looming as a promising market, the daily writes. In its heyday in Communist Czechoslovakia, the then state-owned truck maker produced some 15,000 vehicles annually.
A Czech clash is lined up between players Tomáš Berdych and Jiří
Veselý in the fourth round after both advanced on Sunday. Berdych beat
Germany's Alexander Zverev 6-3,6-4, 4-6, 6-1 at the All-England Club
while Veselý downed Portuguese opponent Joao Sousa in straight sets; the
final score was 6-2, 6-2, 7-5. It is the first time that Veselý has
reached this stage at Wimbledon.
Lucie Šafařová, meanwhile, is the last Czech remaining in the Women's Singles competition: she faces Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakstan.