News Thursday, SEPTEMBER 03th, 1998

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Radio Prague E-news date: September 3rd, 1998 written/read by: Daniela Lazarova

Hello and welcome to the programme. I'm DL and we begin as usual with a look at the main newsstories

Those were the headlines and now the news in more detail:

Government-Clean Hands

The Czech government will commission the country's Intelligence Service with its Clean Hands Campaign against corruption. The service will be asked to screen top-level employees at state owned companies and to review allegedly dubious privatization cases brought to its attention by the Cabinet. At its Wednesday session the government also approved a proposal to restrict the immunity of members of both houses of Parliament.

Communist crimes

The Institute for Investigation of Communist Crimes is considering taking former communist premier Lubomir Strougal to court for endangering public welfare by allegedly withholding vital information from the public in the aftermath of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. According to CTK archives in the crucial week following the disaster, when it was necessary to observe certain precautions, the communist authorities denied there was any danger, claiming there was no sign of increased radiation on Czechoslovak territory. Strougal is refusing to accept any blame, saying his Cabinet made public what information they had at the time.

Klaus-Russia

Addressing an annual gathering of the Montpelerin Society in Washington, Vaclav Klaus,leader of the Civic Democratic Party and prominent Czech economist, expressed the view that the situation in Russia is not nearly as dramatic as it appears. Klaus said that as he saw it Russia was undergoing primarily a government crisis. There is no deep crisis within Russian society or even the country's economy, Klaus said, adding that political commentators around the world were over-reacting to developments , and that expressions such as "a looming world financial crisis" were blowing the matter out of proportion. The Montpelerin Society is an association of prominent intellectuals set up shortly after the SWW, amidst growing concern over the threat of communist expansion.

Against consumerism

The organizers of the two youth demonstrations against consumerism, the Global and Local Street parties, say more radical action could follow. According to the organizers the two demonstrations failed to achieve their primary goal which was to have been a broad debate on consumer lifestyle. A spokesman for the organizers also criticized police for allegedly failing to give a dying man first aid in time to save his life at last weekend's Local Street Party. It is not clear whether the young skinhead died of an overdose of alcohol or drugs. A police spokesperson has rejected the accusation, saying the officers present could do little more than call an ambulance.

Finally a look at the weather:

the warmer weather we've enjoyed these past two days should stay with us, although Thursday is expected to be more overcast, with scattered rain showers. Day temps will remain fairly high though -between 20 and 24 degs. C. Identical day temps are forecast for Friday and Saturday.