News of Radio Prague

Czechs votes against U.N. human rights resolution condemning Israel

The Czech Republic has joined Germany and Britain in voting against a United Nations Human Rights Commission resolution condemning Israel for "gross violations of humanitarian law". The Czech Republic was one of only five countries to oppose the resolution, which accuses Israel of mass killings of Palestinians and demands an end to its military offensive in the occupied territories. The resolution, sponsored mainly by Arab and Muslim states, was passed by 40 votes to five, with seven nations abstaining. The Czech ambassador to the U.N. described the resolution as unbalanced, because it does not call on Palestinian militants to end their campaign of violence against Israeli citizens.

Zeman heads large business delegation to Russia

A large delegation of Czech businessmen has arrived in Moscow, led by Prime Minister Milos Zeman. Czech officials and representatives of more than 70 Czech companies have travelled to Russia as part of a combined business and debt relief mission. On Monday Mr Zeman opened Moscow's first Czech-Russian industrial venture, a lift repair works. Later this week Mr Zeman is expected to meet President Vladimir Putin. The two men will sign an agreement allowing the Russian government to supply military equipment to the Czech Republic as payment towards Russia's large Soviet-era debt.

Klaus rejects calls for "symbolic compensation" for Sudeten Germans

The leader of the opposition Civic Democrats, Vaclav Klaus, has rejected calls for "symbolic compensation" for ethnic Germans expelled from Czechoslovakia after the Second World War. Two and a half million ethnic Germans, known as Sudeten Germans, were expelled from Czechoslovakia after 1945, and some expellee groups are calling for compensation. Mr Klaus said such calls were attempts to revise the post-war reorganisation of Europe.

Civic Democrats criticise "Stop Nationalism" petition

And Mr Klaus's party has criticised a new petition called "Stop Nationalism," organised in protest at the alleged exploitation of the Benes decrees in the run up to June's parliamentary elections. The petition was launched by a group of artists, journalists and clerics, including the Bishop of Prague, Vaclav Maly. One of the initiators, political analyst Jiri Pehe, told reporters hundreds of people had signed the petition since it was launched last week.

Polish police uncover gun-smuggling operation

Polish police say they have uncovered an operation to smuggle weapons into Poland from the Czech Republic. A spokesman told reporters seven people had been arrested, including three Czechs. Among the three was the group's ringleader, a Czech arms dealer who used his business as a front for the smuggling operation. The weapons were allegedly used by Polish criminal gangs.


Finally a look at the weather. Tuesday will be another cloudy and damp day, with showers in eastern parts of the country. Temperatures in the daytime will peak at 13 degrees Celsius, falling at night to one degree.