Daily news summary

Strong winds batter Czech Republic

Strong winds and heavy rain battered the Czech Republic overnight bringing down electricity lines, damaging roofs and stopping trains due to fallen trees.

Although fire crews worked throughout the night a number of rail tracks and roads remained closed to traffic on Monday morning and over 70,000 homes were without power.

Southern Bohemia and Moravia were the worst hit regions.

Man tried for illegal trade in weapons

The regional court in Plzen on Monday heard the testimony of a 42-year-old man who is on trial for holding unregistered weapons and trading in weapons without a license.

According to the state attorney in the years between 2010 and 2015 the man bought and resold 225 weapons, mostly machine guns and a few dozen pistols, which were slated to be destroyed or modified for use with blank cartridges only.

In Slovakia these guns do not require registration, but in the Czech Republic, which has tougher norms they do, since according to experts the modification process can easily be reversed.

If convicted, the man could face up to 8 years in prison.

Confidence in Czech economy up

Overall confidence in the economy rose, for a second successive month, by 0.5 points to 99.6 in September, the Czech Statistics Office said on Monday. Year-on-year, the composite confidence indicator, or Economic Sentiment Indicator, was also higher. Confidence in the economy had been dipping and rising in the first and second quarter.

Secondary schools hold mock local elections ahead of October’s vote

Secondary schools across the Czech Republic are holding mock local elections on Monday a fortnight before the actual elections take place.

The event, which is being held for the 10th time in succession, is organized by the NGO People in Need.

Its aim is to interest children aged over-15 in politics and local affairs and let them experience what voting in elections involves.

The results of the vote will be announced next Tuesday. Local elections and elections to a third of seats in the Senate are due to be held on October 5-6.

President Zeman meets with Steve Bannon

President Miloš Zeman received Steve Bannon, Republican and former White House chief strategist to President Trump, at Lany chateaux on Sunday for talks that covered international developments, EU affairs and issues relating to Russia and China, the president’s spokesman Jiří Ovčáček reported on Twitter. Bannon is in Europe to support the Italian far-right. He has been actively trying to unite far-right movements and parties in Europe.

Czech attacks Serbian artist Marina Abramović

A 51-year old Czech national was arrested in Florence after attacking Serbian artist Marina Abramović at an exhibition of her work, the DPA news agency reported. The man allegedly hit the artist over the head with one of her auto-portraits. The motive behind the attack is not clear.

Marina Abramović, is perceived as one of the most controversial figures in contemporary art, whose works have revolutionized the idea of performance, testing her body and expressive potential to the limit.

Weather forecast

Tuesday should bring partly cloudy to overcast skies with day temperatures between 9 and 13 degrees Celsius. This year’s first snowfall was reported in the Krkonoše Mountains on Monday.