Daily news summary

Health ministry promises to make lacking heart medicine available within days

The Czech Health Ministry has moved to reassure the public that the present fall-out in digoxin, a medicine prescribed to heart patients, will be resolved by the end of next week at the latest.

Health Minister Adam Vojěch said the issue was being dealt with as a top priority and the lacking medicine would be imported to meet local needs.

Pharmacists and doctors described this particular fall out as the most serious in the past year, since there is no substitute for the given medical treatment and discontinuing it could be life-threatening for patients.

Brexit hot priority for 2019

The Czech Foreign Ministry’s priorities for 2019 include Czech-British relations in the event of a "hard“ Brexit, continuing negotiations on the EU budget for 2021-2027 and the Czech Republic’s upcoming chairmanship of the Visegrad group, Czech Television reported on Sunday citing diplomatic sources.

The Czech government is currently preparing draft legislation that would be needed in the event of a "hard" Brexit which it wants to put to Parliament at the beginning of the year.

Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček will also travel to Latin America and Africa where he wants to boost ties and open up new markets for Czech exporters.

La Repubblica: Far right groups misappropriating Palach’s legacy

Italian far-right groups are misappropriating the legacy of Jan Palach, according to the Italian daily la Repubblica.

The paper refers to a concert organized by neo-Nazi groups in Verona, to mark the upcoming 50th anniversary of the tragic death of Jan Palach, who set himself alight in protest against growing public apathy to the Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. The concert is to be held under the motto Country and Freedom.

La Republicca says the tendency on the part of ultra-right groups to appropriate Palach’s legacy “polically and culturally“ has been evident for some time.

Man who held-up bank remanded in custody

The regional court in Příbram has ruled that the man who took several people hostage in a Příbram bank on Friday will be remanded in custody pending trial.

The twenty-eight-year-old man held nine hostages at gunpoint in a branch of the Unicredit bank. He was disarmed by members of a rapid deployment squad and arrested several hours later.

The man reportedly wanted to draw attention to his personal problems and had no intention of robbing the bank. If convicted he could face a sentence of between five and twelve years in prison.

Miner injured in methane blast still in critical condition

One of the miners injured in a methane explosion in a black coal mine in Karvina ten days ago remains in critical condition, according to a spokesperson for Ostrava hospital where he is getting treatment.

The man suffered serious burns to more than 50 percent of his body and specialists are waiting for him to be stabilized before they can begin removing dead tissue and undertaking essential skin grafts.

Another miner, whose condition is reported to be stable, also remains in hospital. The devastating explosion killed 13 miners and injured another 10.

An investigation into what caused the accident has not yet started since the area affected still remains inaccessible for safety reasons.

Czechs loose to Canada in world junior hockey championship

The Czech team was beaten 5:1 by Canada in the world junior hockey championship in Vancouver.

Morgan Frost, Maxime Comtois, Brett Leason, Alexis Lafreniere and MacKenzie Entwistle scored for defending champion Canada; the only goal from the Czechs came from Ondřej Machala.

The loss puts the Czechs fourth in Group A. They will next face the Danish team on Monday.

Weather forecast

Monday should be partly cloudy to overcast with day temperatures between 1 and 5 degrees Celsius.