News of Radio Prague

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British immigration officials to return to Prague airport

The British government has re-introduced controversial immigration controls at Prague's Ruzyne airport. These measures were originally introduced in July to stem the number of Czech nationals seeking political asylum in the UK. As the vast majority of these asylum seekers are from the Czech Republic's Roma minority, the controls have been described as racist and discriminatory by human rights organisations and Roma representatives. The officials were removed two weeks ago, with the provision that they could be re-introduced if the number of asylum seekers increased again. The Czech government approved the re-introduction of the measures this week, and the British embassy in Prague announced on Sunday that as the number of asylum seekers has risen dramatically, immigration officials would start screening passengers at Prague's airport as of early Monday morning.

Further BSE tests prove negative

Tests carried out on four cows from the same herd where the Czech Republic's second case of BSE, or mad cow disease, was discovered this week, have proven negative. The four cows, all related to the cow where tests for BSE proved positive, were slaughtered on Friday on the orders of the Czech Veterinary Authority. A regional spokesman for the authority said that all of the tests carried out on brain tissue taken from the four cows had proven negative. The farm where the infected cow was discovered is to be disinfected, and no further action will be taken at this point.

Post office workers find second batch of body parts

Post office workers in the Moravian capital of Brno have found a second package containing human body parts. Staff at the office discovered a severed arm and leg on Friday, after a package that had been returned to the office began to smell. The police were called in to the office on Saturday after a second package began to give off a similar smell. Although the police have not released any information as to what body parts were contained in the second package, a spokesman told journalists that tests had shown they belonged to the same person, believed to be either an adult or an adolescent. The police have checked the addressee and sender's addresses listed on the packages and say that they are both non-existent.

Twenty skinheads arrested at secret concert

Police in the Western Bohemian city of Plzen have arrested twenty far right extremists who attended a skinhead concert in the early hours of Sunday morning. According to a police spokesman, the arrests were made after the skinheads began to chant the name of Nazi boss Rudolf Hess. The detainees could now face charges of promoting fascism. The Czech police have in the past been fiercely criticised for not taking action at similar events.

79 illegal immigrants detained on the Czech-German border

A total of 79 Romanian nationals were detained by the German police on Saturday just after they had illegally crossed the Czech-German border. They had crossed the border in three cars and a goods vehicle, and the convoy of vehicles attracted the attention of the German police. The group, which includes thirty children, will be sent back to the Czech Republic within a few days, and an investigation is underway to find out how they reached the Czech Republic before passing on to Germany.

Czech troops could be first to begin 'Essential Harvest'

Czech troops newly stationed in Macedonia could be the first to begin carrying out NATO's 'Essential Harvest' mission - disarming ethnic Albanian rebels as part of the recent peace agreement with the Macedonian government. The commander of Czech troops in Macedonia, Captain Oldrich Napravnik, said Czech soldiers, who are currently guarding NATO's command headquarters near the Macedonian capital Skopje, could begin collecting weapons as early as Monday. 125 Czech troops are taking part in the operation.

Local girl takes the title in the Mushroom-picking Olympics

On a lighter sporting note now, the first annual Mushroom-picking Olympics took place in the small town of Brzice in Eastern Bohemia on Saturday, and the gold medal went to local girl Hana Kubeckova, who collected an astounding 17 kilograms of mushrooms between dawn and lunchtime. Overall, the 68 contestants managed to gather almost 100 kilograms of edible fungi between them.

Weather

And finally, a quick look at the weather forecast. Monday in the Czech Republic should start out clear and sunny, but could see rain showers and thunderstorms spreading throughout the country later in the day. Daytime highs could reach up to 30 degrees Celsius. Night-time lows on Monday could drop to 8 degrees Celsius.