Daily news summary


Commemorative mass at St. Vitus for victims of Heydrich Terror

A commemorative mass at St. Vitus Cathedral on Saturday paid tribute to the victims of the Heydrich Terror, the Nazi backlash following the assassination of Reich Protector Reinhard Heydrich by Czech paratroopers in 1942.

In the aftermath of the attack, the paratroopers hid in the crypt of an Orthodox church in Prague for three weeks until their hiding place was betrayed. Three were killed in crossfire with the Nazis; the other four took their own lives rather than surrender. The priest and bishop who sheltered the soldiers were later murdered.

Some 13,000 people who were suspected of having helped the paratroopers were imprisoned and interrogated, many of them were transported to the Mauthausen concentration camp and subsequently executed. 300 people were killed.

The tradition of holding a mass in memory of the victims of this heroic act was established in 1945, broken off by the communist regime three years later, and re-established in 2011.

Culture minister says state attorney should assess committee’s conclusions in OKD sale

Culture Minister Lubomír Zaorálek has said he disagrees with the recent decision of a lower house investigative committee to initiate a criminal case against a number of former politicians involved in the privatisation of the OKD mining company.

Zaorálek said he wants a state attorney to review the commission’s report and assess whether such a move is justified.

According to the commission, the privatisation and a number of dubious transactions accompanying it went against the interests of the state.

The commission has proposed filing criminal charges against four former ministers and a number of businessmen.

Priest Tomáš Halík to receive Order of Merit from German president

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has awarded the Czech Roman Catholic priest and philosopher Tomáš Halík the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany for his contribution to Czech-German reconciliation and furthering understanding among nations and religions.

Halík is to receive the award on October 21st, on the 41st anniversary of the day that he was secretly ordained priest in the German town of Erfurt in view of joining the underground activities of the Roman Catholic Church in then communist Czechoslovakia.

Museum to Czech RAF pilots opens in Ivančice

A muzeum dedicated to RAF pilot Emil Boček and the other 2,000 Czech airmen who fought in the British Royal Airforce in WWII opened in the town of Ivančice on Friday.

The exposition documents the fate of RAF pilots and includes a collection of pictures, papers and artefacts donated by their families. The museum‘s opening was attended by the last surviving Czech RAF pilot 96-year-old Emil Boček, who was briefly released from hospital for the occasion.

The museum with its RAF house, restaurant and wine bar is the undertaking of Boček’s close friend and admirer Jan Dasovský.

War hero General Emil Boček was hospitalized with heart problems at the Brno Faculty Hospital on Friday. No details regarding his health have been released to the press.

Unique collection of Bronze Age objects on display at Roztoky chateau near Prague

A unique collection of Bronze Age objects discovered five years ago near Prague is on show at the Roztoky u Prahy chateau north-west of the capital.

The find, which was labelled “the find of the century” by archaeologists, comprises bowls, daggers and ornaments believed to be 3,000 years old.

The objects have undergone cleaning and conservation by archaeologists and will remain on display until March 2020.

Fate of traditional New Year fireworks display unclear

The fate of the traditional New Year Prague fireworks displays remains unclear.

Prague City Hall announced that they would be cancelled and replaced by a video-mapping show some time ago, but has so far failed to find a provider.

The single company which entered the open competition failed to meet the set criteria.

Meanwhile, the traditional organizers of the New Year fireworks displays have set up an association called Fireworks for Prague and intend to keep the tradition alive with the help of a public collection.

Weather forecast

Sunday should be clear to partly cloudy with day time highs reaching 20 degrees Celsius.