News

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Events mark 63rd anniversary of end of war

The 63rd anniversary of the end of World War II was marked by a number of events in the Czech Republic on Thursday. Czech President Václav Klaus laid a wreath at a monument to Czech soldiers who lost their lives in the service of other countries’ armies in a ceremony attended by veterans and other senior politicians. Mr Klaus also appointed three new generals to the Czech Army. The Chamber of Deputies, the Senate and the prime minister’s residence were opened to the public, on what was a state holiday.

Czech PM makes unannounced visit to Afghanistan

The Czech prime minister, Mirek Topolánek, made an unannounced visit to Czech soldiers in Afghanistan on Thursday. His visit came a week after a soldier from the Czech Republic became the country’s second combat casualty in Afghanistan. Mr Topolánek first stopped at a field hospital at Kabul airport, before travelling to the province of Logar, where a Czech provincial reconstruction team is operating. The PM told Czech soldiers they were mostly the same age as his oldest child and when one of them was killed or injured it felt as if it had happened to his own child. By coincidence, the second Czech to die in combat in Afghanistan was killed hours after the Czech Parliament approved the sending of 100 extra soldiers to the war-torn country.

Czech soldier injured in Iraq

A Czech soldier was injured in a rocket attack on an allied forces military base in the Iraqi city of Basra on Thursday, the news website Novinky.cz reported. The soldier, whose hand was hit by shell splinter, underwent an operation at a British field hospital. His condition is stable and his life is not in danger. The chief of staff of the Czech Army, Vlastimil Picek, said the injured man would be brought home.

New section of Prague Metro system officially opened

A new section of Prague’s Metro system was officially opened on Thursday. The C or red line has been extended by three stations, and 4.6 km, from Ládví to Letňany. It will now serve 50,000 more residents of the Czech capital. Speaking at Thursday’s opening ceremony, Prague’s mayor Pavel Bém said extension work would not stop there: nine new stations are to be added to the A or green line, including one at Prague Airport, and a whole new D line is to be built.

Four-year-old falls from seventh floor window

A four-year-old child fell out of a seventh floor window in a housing scheme in Most, north Bohemia on Thursday. A police spokesperson said the child’s injuries were serious. An investigation has begun into the incident.

Thirteen seriously injured as bus crashes into house

Thirteen people were seriously injured when a bus crashed into a house in the west Bohemian village of Velemyšleves on Wednesday. Twenty others were less seriously hurt, a spokesperson for the local fire service said. The driver of the bus said the vehicle’s brakes had failed at the bottom of a steep hill. The owner of the firm which operated the bus said it had passed a technical examination just three months ago.

Average age of member of Communist Party is 70

The average age of members of the Communist Party is 70, according to an internal survey quoted by the news website Novinky.cz. The average age of members in Prague is 75. At the same time, the Communists remain the biggest political party in the Czech Republic, with over 70,000 members.

Poborský goal voted best individual goal in history of European Championship

A goal by Czech footballer Karel Poborský at the European Championship in 1996 has been voted the greatest individual goal in the history of the competition in a poll on its official website. Poborský cleverly lifted the ball over the Portuguese goalkeeper in the quarter-finals of Euro 96. That lob proved valuable: soon afterwards the midfielder was signed by Manchester United, before going on to a more successful engagement at Benfica. He made a record 118 appearances for the Czech national team.

Weather

It should remain mainly sunny over the next few days, with temperatures of up to 21 degrees Celsius.