News of Radio Prague
Czech Air Force on alert because of terrorist threat
The Czech Air Force is on alert after the police received an anonymous threat of a terrorist attack in the second biggest Czech city, Brno. The police said they received an anonymous SMS message threatening with a terrorist attack on three high-rise buildings which are part of a business centre in Brno-Zabovresky and suggesting it might come from the air. The airspace over the city of Brno is now guarded by aircraft from the Caslav air base.
Czech foreign minister cancels meeting with Arafat
Czech foreign minister Jan Kavan who is on a working visit to the Middle East, has cancelled a planned meeting with Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. Mr. Kavan is holding talks with Israeli and Palestinian officials. He is due to meet Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon on Sunday. The Czech foreign ministry said Mr. Kavan's negotiations focus on the evaluation and the solutions of the present crisis, and on questions concerning the renewal of peace talks between Israel and Palestine. The mission also includes talks on Israeli investment in the Czech Republic, and an announcement of Czech humanitarian aid for the Palestinians.
Czechs reject cheap military aircraft from Belgium
The Czech cabinet has rejected an offer from the Belgian government to buy used fighter jets for its air force. Belgium offered the Czech Republic 24 used F-16 jet fighters for 9 billion CZK. The Czech government recently approved a purchase of 24 modern JAS-39 Gripen aircraft from the British-Swedish consortium SAAB/BAE Systems for 60 billion crowns. The consortium in turn promised to bring to the Czech Republic investment amounting to 80 billion crowns in the form of offset programmes. The biggest military equipment deal in the Czech history is yet to be approved by the upper house of Parliament, the Senate.
Political prisoners commemorate victims of communist terror
Several hundred former political prisoners have commemorated the victims of Communist terror in the town of Jachymov, West Bohemia. The head of the Czech Confederation of Political Prisoners has criticised the mainstream political parties for failing to deal with the legacy of the Communist regime. He said the main obstacle to punishing the crimes of communism was the justice system which in his opinion has not yet adopted democratic principles and values. The in the 1950's Communist regime imprisoned almost 50,000 its opponents in 15 labour camps around Jachymov and forced them to work in local uranium mines. Some 2000 of the prisoners did not survive the inhuman conditions there.
Czech weather report
We are expecting a mostly cloudy day with showers, the highest daytime temperatures should range from 16 to 21 degrees Celsius.