News

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Strong winds, heavy snow blamed for road deaths

The strong winds and heavy snow which have hit the Czech Republic in recent days have been blamed for a number of deaths on Czech roads. Eleven people were killed in accidents on Friday and Saturday, with the police called out to almost 2,000 accidents. A police spokesperson said it looks like being one of the most tragic weekends of 2005 on Czech roads.

State to help ethnic Czechs from Kazakhstan relocate to Czech Republic

The Foreign Ministry is to help 200 ethnic Czechs living in Kazakhstan return to the Czech Republic next year, Czech Television reported. The ministry is to spend around a million US dollars helping them find work and accommodation. Their families moved to Kazakhstan in two waves, in the mid-19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century.

Customs make major heroin seizure on Slovak border

Czech customs officers have seized 19 kg of heroin in a truck entering the country from Slovakia. The find has been partly credited to use of a large mobile x-ray detector. A spokesman said the heroin was moving along the so-called Balkan trail, on which Czech customs also seized a large quantity of the drug earlier this year.

Communist Youth stage protest over threatened banning

The Union of Communist Youth has staged a protest outside the Constitutional Court in Brno against moves to ban the organisation because it promotes violent revolution. The Interior Ministry has threatened to outlaw the group if they do not change their policies, on the grounds that the young Communists are registered as a civic association, not a political party. They say they have no intention of dropping their call for a workers' revolution.

CzechInvest official: Hyundia investment would increase GDP by 1.5 percent

If the South Korean company Hyundai opens a car plant in Moravia Czech gross domestic product could increase by 1.5 percent in the year 2009, an official from state agency CzechInvest said on Czech Television on Sunday. A deal has been struck to buy land for the proposed plant, which would employee 3,000 people; a decision on whether it will be built is due by the end of the year.

Woman dies after Olomouc hit and run

An elderly woman has died after being the victim of a hit-and-run at a zebra crossing in the Moravian town of Olomouc on Saturday. Police said she was carried for tens of metres on the bonnet of the hit-and-run car before the driver sped off. The woman's husband was injured in the incident. Police have appealed for witnesses.

Former bodyguards of fugitive businessman arrested

The police have arrested two boxers who acted as bodyguards for fugitive businessman Radovan Krejcir, the Sunday newspapers reported. The two recently visited Mr Krejcir in the Seychelles, where he fled after escaping from the Czech police. Meanwhile, the businessman says he will release documents proving he paid bribes to the governing Social Democrats. Radovan Krejcir is wanted on charges of plotting the murder of a customs officer and large scale fraud.

Jagr named Sportsperson of Year for first time

Ice hockey star Jaromir Jagr has been named Czech Sportsperson of the Year for the first time. Jagr, who is 33, was a member of the Czech Republic team which won the World Championships this year, and is having a brilliant season with the NHL's New York Rangers. Meanwhile, Jagr and his Czech team-mates - who took the award for collective sports - have donated their prize money to Jiri Fischer, a member of the squad who recently suffered a heart seizure during a game.

Weather

Forecasters have again warned of the danger of heavy snows and strong winds causing problems around the Czech Republic. Temperatures in the coming days will reach up to 3 degrees Celsius.