News

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NGO plans court action over use of caged beds in Czech institutions

A Budapest-based NGO is planning a court challenge to the use of caged beds in mental hospitals and other institutions in the Czech Republic, the internet news site Aktualne.cz reported. A spokesperson for the Mental Disability Advocacy Centre said it was looking into specific cases to be used as the basis for legal action against the Czech state. Aktualne says hundreds of patients are restrained in caged beds in the Czech Republic.

Building owners can sue state over losses caused by rent regulation

The owners of apartment buildings can sue the state over losses they have suffered because rents are regulated, under a ruling by the Constitutional Court on Tuesday. Judge Ivana Janu said the state was responsible for the losses because parliament had failed to act on the issue for several years. Owners argue rents are so low they can neither maintain their buildings nor make a profit. Paradoxically, deregulation was approved last month, with rents set to rise 14 percent a year between 2007 and 2010.

Pig farm to remain on site of former Romany concentration camp after talks fail

Plans to remove a pig farm from the site of a world war two concentration camp for Romanies have ground to a halt, Lidove noviny reported on Tuesday. Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek had pledged to provide money to buy out the pig farm at Lety in south Bohemia, but talks between the government and its owners have collapsed. Mr Paroubek now says it will be an issue for the next government, the paper said. A spokesperson for a Romany group said the stalemate proved the government's promises had been intended for an overseas audience.

Semtex makers not to sue Madonna over name

The Czech explosives manufacturer Explosia has decided not to sue Madonna for breach of its Semtex trademark. The company had considered taking the pop star to court after she began using the name Semtex Girls Ltd in the UK without asking its permission. The plastic explosive gained notoriety for its frequent use by terror groups such as the IRA.

Czechs spend record amount on slot machines

Czechs put a record 50 billion crowns (two billion dollars) into gaming machines last year, according to figures released by the Finance Ministry. The number of machines also increased in 2005 to over 52,000. Operators pay local municipalities over 1,000 dollars a year per machine.

Slavia draw level in Extraliga playoffs

Slavia Prague are now level with Sparta Prague in the playoffs in ice hockey's Extraliga, after winning the second game of the best-of-seven final series 2:1 on Monday evening. Sparta will have home advantage when action resumes on Thursday.

Weather

It should get progressively warmer in the coming days, with temperatures of up to 18 degrees Celsius expected by the weekend. It will be bright with some rain in places.