Insight Central Europe News


Explosion in Budapest leaves two dead

An explosion and fire at a Budapest fireworks warehouse has killed two people. On Thursday, 50 tonnes of fireworks exploded at the warehouse owned by the company Pyro-technic Kft. The blast took place in a retail and industrial park on the outskirts of the city. The explosion, the fire and the smoke caused car crashes on the nearby motorway, and at least four houses and 20 cars burnt out.

Fresh charges as Czech football corruption scandal deepens

Just days before the beginning of the new football season, police in the Czech Republic have charged 17 people in connection with allegations of match-fixing. Sixteen referees are being questioned, along with Ivan Hornik, the director of Viktoria Zizkov football club. Czech football has been dogged by corruption allegations since May, when police arrested the director of the club Synot (now known as Slovacko) and several referees.

Polish Aids Centre running out of funds

The Polish National AIDS Center says that it will run out of funds for the treatment of HIV sufferers and AIDS patients by mid-November. Its director Anna Marzec says that an estimated 30,000 such patients live in Poland. The Center hopes to receive financial aid from the Global HIV/AIDS fund as well as the World Health Organization. Every year up to 600 new HIV cases are registered in Poland.

Cargo trams for Austrian capital?

Public transport officials in Vienna say they are considering the use of the city's buses, trams and subway trains as cargo transporters. They say it first has to be determined what, if at all, demand there is for the service and how to solve logistical problems. Such cargo transport would take place during the night or slack hours. It's been suggested the vehicles could be used to transport food to supermarkets, garbage or rubble from building sites.

Slovak troops to stay in Cyprus and Israel

Slovak armed forces are not going to withdraw from either a mission in Israel or a peacekeeping mission in Cyprus. The Slovak Army's General Staff has said it regards these two missions as the country's most important. Some 370 peacekeepers operate in both missions, which are under UN command. In July, Slovakia pulled its troops out of Eritrea, following a new Slovak Army plan limiting participation in foreign missions.

Opposition grows to Poland's presence in Iraq

Over 70 percent of Poles are against the presence of Polish troops in Iraq, according to the latest survey conducted by the CBOS polling agency. Some 67% of those polled say that Polish soldiers should be pulled out from Iraq as soon as possible. Only a little over 20 percent of Poles support the deployment of the Polish contingent in Iraq. Over 80 percent believe that Poland's military involvement in Iraq carries the risk of terrorist attacks on this country and its citizens. Opposition to Polish presence in Iraq increased by 7 percent compared with June.