The internationally renowned Czech soprano Naděžda Kniplová has died at
the age of 87, a Prague National Theatre spokesperson said.
She joined the theatre’s opera company in 1964, and after appearing at the Salzburg Festival in 1967 was offered roles abroad.
Later in life, Kniplová was a professor at the Prague Music Academy. In 2011, she refused to accept a life-time achievement award, saying she should have been given it earlier.
The Czech Republic could launch its own satellite to serve the new NATO
satellite centre SATCEN ČR, a spokesperson for the country’s military
counterintelligence – which runs it – said. The hardware, which could
be launched within a few years, would be part of a national satellite
The Ministry of Defence invested hundreds of millions of crowns into SATCEN ČR, which went into full operation at the start of this year. It evaluates images and data for both NATO and the Czech Army and other Czech institutions, though little information on its activities has been made public.
The governing ANO party would have taken 33.6 percent of the vote if
elections had been held last month, suggests a poll conducted by the STEM
agency. The December survey indicates that the Pirate Party and the Civic
Democrats would have tied for second on 12.3 percent each.
All nine of the parties in the current Chamber of Deputies would get back in, according to the poll. Though previous polls put them approaching the 5 percent threshold, the Tricolour party of Vaclav Klaus Jr. would only have received 0.5 percent of the vote in December, the new survey suggests.
President Miloš Zeman has withdrawn his nomination of Helena Válková for
the post of ombudsman. Ms. Válková, who is government commissioner for
human rights and a former justice minister, became embroiled in controversy
over a link to a notorious Communist-era prosecutor.
Mr. Zeman’s new candidate for the post is Stanislav Křeček, a former deputy ombudsman. Mr. Křeček, who is 81, had serious disagreements with current ombudswoman Anna Šabatová while in that position.
Social Democrat MP Kateřina Valachová says she should not at present be
included in the conversation over who should become the Czech Republic’s
next ombudsman. President Zeman suggested she could be a suitable candidate
after his previous choice, Helena Válková, became embroiled in
controversy. Mr. Zeman said he would put her name forward if Social
Democrats leader Jan Hamáček nominated her. Prime Minister Andrej Babiš
of ANO says, however, that the next holder of the post should not be a
Ms. Valachová said one reason she should not be in the running was that her good friend Vít Alexandr Schorm had been nominated for ombudsman by the Senate.
The mayor of Prague, Zdeněk Hřib, says cooperation with the Chinese city
of Shanghai brought the Czech capital little benefit. He told the Czech
News Agency it was at present more advantageous for Prague to work closely
with the Taiwanese capital, Taipei, with which it signed a sister city
agreement on Monday.
Shanghai, which previously had a similar partnership with Prague, responded to the new pact by saying it had cut all official ties to the Czech capital.
Prague originally came into conflict with Shanghai when the former’s leadership rejected a clause in the pair's sister city deal recognising Beijing’s One China policy.
Josef Svoboda, who was a political prisoner in his native Czechoslovakia,
has received a major honour in his home of five decades, Canada. Professor
Emeritus Svoboda was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada earlier
this month for his pioneering work on Arctic tundra ecosystems and his
mentorship of other scientists.
Svoboda was arrested as a student in 1949 and sentenced in a Communist show trial to 11 years imprisonment, spending five of those years in the uranium mines. He moved to Canada in 1968 at the age of 37.
The Prague transport authority has begun providing information about
departure times from stops in real time. The information is available at
the web address kdymitojede.cz. At present the system only supplies data
about the location of a vehicle when it leaves a stop and does not provide
In the coming weeks the information should also appear on online maps run by the capital’s transport authority and other non-commercial transport information websites.
The fruit harvest in the Czech Republic declined by 27 percent year-on-year
in 2019, according to official figures released on Tuesday. The reason for
the decline was frosts in the spring, experts said.
With the exception of apricots, raspberries and blackberries, all types of fruit recorded a year-on-year fall in yield last year. The overall volume of fruit harvested in 2019 was 18 percent below the average over the last five years.