Political parties and other groups held events in Prague and elsewhere in
the Czech Republic on Tuesday marking May Day, which is a holiday. The
Communist Party had a gathering at the capital’s Výstaviště, the
Social Democrats were on Střelecký ostrov, ANO were at Ladronka and the
Civic Democrats were on Petřín hill.
Anarchists organised a gathering in Prague while the far-right Workers Party of Social Justice and other groups came together in Plzeň.
In the Czech Republic May 1 is also considered a day of lovers and homosexual rights group We Are Fair created a huge cake in Prague in support of marriage equality.
The text of an agreement on a coalition between ANO and the Social
Democrats supported by the Communists on key votes should be completed this
week. The leaders of the three parties should confirm the text on Friday,
Czech Television reported on Tuesday.
However, disagreements remain, with ANO against the Social Democrats’ efforts to include a proviso under which ANO chief and acting PM Andrej Babiš would have to step down if found guilty of abusing EU subsidies.
ANO are also unwilling to accede to the Social Democrats’ demands to weaken the position of Freedom and Direct Democracy on lower house committees.
The Anifilm festival of animated film gets underway in the town of Třebon
on Tuesday with the Czech premiere’s of Wes Anderson’s latest movie
Isle of Dogs. Guests at the annual event will include US director Chris
Landreth, who received an Oscar for his film Ryan, and animators from the
Libuše Čihařová, who co-created the classic Czech cartoons Bob and Bobek and Maxipes Fík, will receive a lifetime achievement award at Anifilm, which runs until Sunday.
Ice hockey star Jaromír Jágr looks set to remain with his hometown club
Kladno next season. The 46-year-old’s name is among the 16 players listed
as being on Kladno’s roster for the 2018–2019 season, which has been
published on the club’s website.
Jágr, the second most productive player in the history of the NHL, joined Kladno from Calgary at the end of January. He subsequently played only four full games before being largely sidelined by the return of a knee injury.
The Prague fire service were called out 15 times between Monday evening and
Tuesday morning in connection with the Czech tradition of “witch
burning” bonfires. They had been banned in the capital this year in view
of dry conditions and strong winds and in eight cases the organisers agreed
to fire officers’ calls for them to douse the fires. The other seven
cases were false alarms, a fire service spokesperson said.
Fire fighters did not have to deal with any blazes resulting from unauthorised bonfires getting out of control.
Large public bonfires were called off at a number of places in the capital and people were also told not to light them on their own properties.
A total ban on smoking came into effect at Prague’s Václav Havel Airport
on Tuesday. Previous smoking areas in the facility’s transit areas have
been done away with and the ban also applies to electronic cigarettes.
Operators said they expected the number of smoke-free airports to grow and wished to get on board with the healthy trend.
Fourteen spots near entrances to the airport’s buildings have been reserved for smokers.
Prague City Hall and the app-based ride sharing service Uber have signed a
memorandum of understanding in which Uber has agreed to meet conditions
which would put it on an equal footing with taxi drivers.
The company has agreed to operate a licensed service, with drivers registering and taxing their earnings in the Czech Republic. Uber has also pledged to join the electronic evidence of sales system introduced last year.
Prague and Brno taxi drivers who consider Uber unfair competition, have been protesting against the ride sharing service for months.
Car maker BMW is set to get incentives worth 18.7 million euros to build a
test centre for self-driving and electric vehicles in the Czech Republic
under a memorandum approved by the Czech government on Monday.
The construction of BMW’s first vehicle testing project in Eastern Europe should create several hundred jobs. The project should include the testing of driver-assistance and braking systems.
BMW is to receive a building permit in the last quarter of 2019 and the test centre should be operational by 2022.