Daily news summary


Czech inspectors search for metric ton of possible Salmonella-infected Polish beef

Days after announcing they had traced all deliveries of Polish beef infected with the Salmonella virus, Czech veterinary inspectors now say another metric ton of suspect beef from the same source was imported into the country.

Polish authorities informed their Czech counterparts about another shipment of 1,164 kilogrammes of potentially infected meat under the terms of a rapid alert system, Czech Television reports.

Last week, the Czech Republic introduced strict controls on all beef imports from Poland.

Student martyr Jan Zajíc honoured on 50th anniversary of his self-immolation

People gathered on Wenceslas Square and other sites on Monday to pay homage to the memory of student martyr Jan Zajíc, who set himself on fire 50 years ago, on the 21st anniversary of the communist putsch of February 1948.

Zajíc, aged 18 at the time of his death, was inspired by university student Jan Palach, who a month earlier made the same sacrifice in an effort to rouse the nation in the face of Soviet occupation.

Prague to introduce free public transport, trains, during smog alerts

Prague City Council has agreed to introduce free public transport, including trains, during smog alerts. The cost to the budget would be approximately five million crowns per day.

In recent years, Prague City Hall has considered implement a range of regulations to be enforced during periods when the city is hit by particularly bad air pollution.

These include requiring factories to temporarily reduce output during periods of high smog barring trucks from entering the city.

One in five Prague workers are foreign born, IPR study says

About 200,000 foreigners work in the Czech capital and constitute one fifth of the workforce, according to an analysis by the City’s Institute of Planning and Development (IPR Prague).

Foreign workers in Prague are mainly filling jobs requiring unskilled labour it said. Two-thirds are citizens of non-EU countries.

At the end of June 2018, according to the study, most were citizens of Ukraine (49,306), Russia (23,338), Vietnam (12,765), US (6,556) and China (4,967).

Meanwhile, a study by Sociological Institute of the Academy of Sciences notes that four in five foreigners registered in Prague have a high school diploma or university degree.

Post Bellum preparing Velvet Revolution anniversary projects in over 30 cities

The group Post Bellum, which collects oral histories on key events in Czech history, has agreed with some 30 cities to stage events commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution.

Founder and director Mikuláš Kroupa told journalists the aim is to coordinate with municipalities and other civil society group events nationwide marking the November 1989 protest that led to the collapse of communism.

Post Bellum works to increase public understanding of 20th Century history, especially among younger generations. It has collected interviews from 8,962 people so far and published tens of thousands of audio and video clips, photos and scanned documents.

Czech PM holds bilateral talks on fringe of EU-Arab League summit

At the start of a two-day EU-Arab League summit in Sharm El-Sheikh, Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš met for bilateral talks with Iraqi President Barham Salih and Lebanese prime Minister Saad Hariri.

The Czech prime minister said later his talks with President Salih had focussed on possibilities opening up in business and trade and the post-war reconstruction of Iraq. Mr. Babiš welcomed the opportunity for a series of bilateral talks with Arab leaders which might otherwise have taken longer to arrange.

The two-day summit is the first joint meeting of EU and Arab League top officials. Among the topics on the agenda are migration, climate change, regional conflicts in Syria and Yemen, and the fight against terrorism.

Confidence in Czech economy rises after declining three straight months

Overall confidence in the Czech economy slightly increased in February after declining three consecutive months, according to the Czech Statistical Office (ČSÚ).

Confidence rose by 0.2 points to 98.2 points last month, it said. In annual terms, overall confidence in the economy is lower than in February 2018, and the confidence of both businesses and consumers has declined year on year.

Weather outlook

Tuesday should be partly cloudy throughout the country and especially warm in central Bohemia. Daytime highs should range between 10 to 23 degrees Celsius.