Prime Minister Andrej Babiš says people should consider honouring singer
Karel Gott in other ways than by attending a public memorial event on
Friday, the day before his private funeral. The public will be able to pay
their respects to the singer, who died last week aged 80, at Prague’s
Žofín Palace. The venue say they can handle up to 50,000 visitors but
there have been reports that up to 300,000 are planning to attend.
On Friday Prague will also be hosting a football game between the Czech Republic and England, while the second day of the annual Signal festival of light will also be bringing large crowds to the city centre.
The Czech foreign minister, Tomáš Petříček, has expressed concerns
over plans to move United States troops in Syria and possible military
action by Turkey. President Donald Trump announced on Monday that his
country’s army would leave north-eastern Syria, a move that could open
the way for Turkey to attack Kurdish fighters across the border.
In a tweet Mr. Petříček said ordinary people would suffer and the situation could only be resolved politically and diplomatically. He said he hoped there would be no attempts to force refugees to move, adding that international law must be respected.
A spokesperson for President Miloš Zeman said he was analysing the situation. However, the head of the Office of the President’s international department, Rudolf Jindrák, said the Kurds could not be thrown under the bus.
Kurdish forces were US allies in defeating Islamic State in Syria. However, Turkey views the Kurdish militias that dominate the US-allied Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) as terrorists.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš says the Visegrad Four are considering a
joint invitation to Donald Trump to visit Warsaw. Mr. Babiš made the
comment in an interview in daily Blesk. He said Poland was the closest ally
of the US and that if he came to Warsaw the V4 leaders would like to
discuss Euro-American relations, including trade deals, with the US
The Czech Republic now holds the presidency of the Visegrad Four, which also includes Slovakia, Poland and Hungary.
Mr. Babiš said the last time he had seen Mr. Trump, at the UN General Assembly, he had pointed out to the US leader that he had failed to mention Europe in his address.
Up to 40 percent of felons fitted with electronic ankle tags in the Czech
Republic fail to comply with the rules surrounding their usage, Czech
Television reported on Tuesday. The most frequent transgressions are
breaking the tags and late arrivals.
Around 10 percent of those ordered to wear the bracelets regularly break regulations.
Since the system was fully introduced in this country in September last year around 300 people have been fitted with electronic tags.
Bohemians 1905 football club have fired their coach Martin Hašek after two
and a half years at the helm. The Czech First League side parted ways with
the coach after picking up 12 points in the first 12 rounds of the season.
The “Kangaroos” are currently 11th in the table.
Club officials say they will announce a replacement for Hašek, who is the brother of ex-ice hockey goaltender Dominik Hašek, in the coming days.
A lower house investigative committee is to take a criminal case against a
number of politicians involved in the privatisation of the OKD mining
company. The move pertains to former Social Democratic Party ministers
Bohuslav Sobotka and Milan Urban and to Vladimír Dlouhý and Jiří
Skalický, who were ministers for the Civic Democratic Alliance. It also
involves businessmen Zdeněk Bakala, Viktor Koláček and others.
Pirate Party MP Lukáš Černohorský said the committee had doubts about whether Mr. Dlouhý acted in accordance with the law when, as industry minister, he placed state-owned apartments under OKD.
The case against Mr. Sobotka, who later became prime minister, and Mr. Urban, centres on the sell-off of a minority stake in OKD in 2004.
Mr. Černohorský said the then ministers had failed to negotiate a price advantageous to the state.
October 8 is the first ever Sokol Memorial Day in the Czech Republic,
marking the anniversary of the order by Nazi governor Reinhard Heydrich to
arrest over 1,500 members of the Czech gymnastics association. Those
detained were sent to concentration camps and the organisation was banned a
few days later.
An estimated 5,000 Sokols were murdered or died in battle during WWII and memorial ceremonies are being for the victims around the Czech Republic. The Sokol flag has also been hoisted over Prague City Hall.
Czech forest owners face losses to the tune of 40 billion crowns ($1.70
billion) this year from an escalating spread of bark beetle, an industry
think-tank said on Monday.
The Czech Forest think-tank said about 30 million cubic metres of timber will be affected this year, a figure that has surpassed earlier estimates and is nearly double the 18 million last year.
The Czech Republic is one of the worst-affected countries in Central Europe, where spruce forests are a key source of income for the timber industry.
Over 100,000 people, from at home and abroad, are expected to pay their
last respects to the late Czech pop idol Karel Gott at Žofín Palace on
The organizers expect hour long queues and have warned people that not everyone may get the chance to pay their last respects to the artist whose remains will be displayed between 8am and 10 pm in the main hall of the palace.
Meanwhile police, paramedics and the transport authorities are preparing for a massive turnout. Regiojet has enforced its trains to and from Prague, as has Prague’s metro.
Police will be out in force for the event and trams between the National Theatre and Žofín will be rerouted for the day.