Insight Central Europe News

EU-Russia summit dominated by disputes

A summit between the European Union and Russia on Friday was overshadowed by disputes - including US plans to locate anti-missile bases in Central Europe and a Russian ban on imports of Polish meat. There were also differences on the future status of Kosovo. The two sides were unable to begin long delayed talks on a new strategic partnership agreement, because of a veto imposed by Poland and supported by Lithuania.

Slovakia and Poland agree on military cooperation

Slovakia and Poland have agreed to cooperate on new military projects. During talks last week in Warsaw Slovak defence minister Frantisek Kasicky and his Polish counterpart Aleksander Szczyglo said both countries would support each other in the international arena and that Polish - Slovak military cooperation would focus on new projects. Kasicky and Szczyglo did not discuss US plans to install an anti- missile system in Poland and the Czech Republic.

Ryanair to launch new routes from Budapest

The European budget airline Ryanair will begin flights between Budapest and the British city of Nottingham from the end of October. Tomas Kulakowski, the carrier's business and marketing director for Central Europe, said Ryanair was expecting 60,000 passengers to fly the route in its first year. He indicated more routes from Hungary could be established within the near future.

Slovenia hoping to join OECD "within a year"

Slovenia's Finance Minister Andrej Bajuk says he expects his country to join the OECD, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, within a year. He was speaking after the OECD invited Russia, Chile, Estonia, Slovenia and Israel to begin membership talks. In the last 11 years, the OECD has admitted only one new member - Slovakia.

Klara Polackova first Czech woman to climb Everest

A 29-year-old woman from Prague has become the first Czech woman to climb Mount Everest. Klara Polackova reached the top of the world's highest mountain on Wednesday. Ms Polackova says she is now looking forward to a shower and Czech beer and food. Just over a day later, Prague mayor Pavel Bem, who is currently on unpaid leave to fulfill his childhood dream to climb Mount Everest, also reached the summit with a separate group. When he and Ms Polackova will be back depends entirely on weather conditions.