Daily news summary


Communist Party calls on government to prevent removal of Konev statue

The leadership of the Communist Party has appealed to the government to prevent the removal of the controversial statue of Soviet Marshal Ivan Konev from its site in Prague 6.

In a resolution approved at a meeting of the party leadership on Saturday, the party says it disagrees with the decision of the Prague 6 authorities to replace the controversial statue with a new monument to the liberators of Prague in 1945. It says that with respect to historic events the government should ensure that the statue be allowed to remain in its rightful place.

The decision to remove the statue from its present site and find a suitable new location for it has angered the Russian authorities, who issued a statement on Friday warning Prague the act would damage Czech-Russian relations and would not go unanswered.

Vietnamese human rights activists voice safety concerns

The kidnapping of a former Vietnamese Communist party official from Berlin via the Czech Republic and Slovakia to Vietnam, which took place two years ago, has raised security concerns among the Vietnamese community in the Czech Republic, according to a report on the situation of national minorities prepared by Vietnamese representatives.

Human rights activists are particularly concerned about their safety, the report says. They believe that the Vietnamese Communist Party has a network of agents in the Czech Republic and prepared the kidnapping here with the help of Vietnamese people with residence permits.

The document should be discussed by the Czech government on Monday.

Law on cash registers extended to remaining businesses

The lower house has approved a bill extending the law on electronic cash registers, in other words a duty to report sales electronically, to a category of firms that are not yet subject to it, among others to craftsmen, doctors, lawyers, hairdressers and taxi drivers.

The amendment will allow small businesses with sales of up to 600,000 crowns to record sales in off-line mode using paper receipts. At the same time some services and goods, such as, catering, cleaning services or home care will move to the lowest 10% VAT rate.

Opposition parties, which have criticized the law as a bureaucratic burden on entrepreneurs are preparing to file a complaint against it at the Constitutional Court.

The law on electronic cash registers was introduced in 2016 to counter the grey economy and tax fraud. Prime Minister Babiš claims it has brought results and increased state revenues.

Czech and Russian authorities resolve air traffic dispute

Air traffic between the Czech Republic and Russia will continue to operate without restrictions, and will even intensify next year, the Czech aviation authorities reported after successfully resolving an air traffic dispute with Russia.

The dispute pertaining to Russia’s decision to severely limit the number of Czech flights over Siberia resulted in the cancellation of several flights in June of this year as the two countries revoked flight permits for each other’s air carriers in a tit for tat move.

Both sides subsequently temporarily released operations until September to resolve the dispute.

Russia has long been one of the busiest destinations for traffic from the Czech Republic.

Young generation not happy with political situation, housing accessibility and climate change

A poll targeting young people born after the fall of communism in 1989, suggests that they are not happy with the political situation and housing accessibility, while placing great emphasis on the environment and EU membership.

Respondents in the under 30 age group stressed the importance of being able to travel freely and expressed concern with regard to climate change.

Fifty-five percent of them consider housing accessibility to be problematic. Only 10 percent are happy with the political situation. Compared to the older generation, they are also more tolerant of immigrants.

The poll, conducted by the Median agency in cooperation with Charles University, was undertaken in connection with the upcoming 30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution and the return of democracy to the Czech Republic.

Czechs place 6th at FIBA World Championship

The Czech basketball team was beaten 90:81 by the Serbs at the World Cup in China, bagging sixth place in the overall ranking. The result has secured them a place in the qualifiers for the Olympics.

The team’s performance in China was the best result since 1970 when the Czechoslovak team also placed sixth at the FIBA championship in the former Yugoslavia.

Weather forecast

Sunday should be clear to partly cloudy with day temperatures between 21 and 25 degrees Celsius.