• Weather

    07/01/2020

    Thursday will be cloudier and see showers in all regions of the country. In Northern Bohemia, storms are also expected. Temperatures will fall slightly to around 25 degrees Celsius.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Czech Republic becomes member of European Centre of Excellence for Civilian Crisis Management

    07/01/2020

    As of July 1st, the Czech Republic is now a member of the European Centre of Excellence for Civilian Crisis Management in Berlin, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed on Wednesday. The new institution is focused on intergovernmental cooperation in the areas of preparing, training and sending experts on civilian missions, as well as other issues connected to the EU’s defence and security policy.

    There are already 20 Czech experts working on civilian missions in Europe, Africa and Asia, with more than a hundred active in other supranational security organisations.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Prague City Hall hopes to attract more tourists through new voucher programme

    07/01/2020

    Prague City Hall has launched a new campaign called V Praze jako doma (At home in Prague) to help the Czech capital’s tourism sector, whose losses have been estimated to range as high as CZK 100 billion due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Tourists, who book a hotel or similar residential service, will in turn receive vouchers that can be used for visiting cultural and entertainment facilities. A total of CZK 120 million has been committed to the campaign.

    A total of 1,1 million guests have so far been accommodated in Prague hotels, camps and boarding houses this year, more than 27 percent less compared to a year ago. The number of nights tourists spent in the capital is also down by almost 24 percent.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Government launches state support programme for Czech spas

    07/01/2020

    A new system of vouchers, through which the state will support Czech spas, launched on Wednesday. People aged over 18 who pay health insurance will be able to generate the coupons, which offer discounts of up to CZK 4,000, on the website of the Ministry of Health, events site Kudyznudy.cz or directly at the spa.

    The government has allocated CZK 1 billion from the state budget for the programme, which will run until the end of 2020. Prime Minister Andrej Babis said the government is also considering issuing a contribution of between 200 to 400 crowns for renting rooms on holidays.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Ten Czech universities make it into 2021 QS World University Rankings

    07/01/2020

    The annual QS World University Rankings table for 2021 has placed 10 Czech tertiary education facilities in its worldwide top 1,000 list. Charles University performed the best, placing 260th, followed by the University of Chemistry and Technology in 342nd place and the Czech Technical University in Prague that ranked 432nd. All three universities improved their rankings as opposed to last year.

    Brno’s Masaryk University, the Palacký University in Olomouc, the Technical University of Liberec, the Czech University of Agriculture and the University of Pardubice all ranked between the 500-1000 spots.

    Czech newcomers Mendel University and the Brno University of Technology also placed on the list.

    The QS ranking is based on six dimensions, the most important are reputations of academics and graduate employers, followed by the number of citations in the Scopus database, the number of students per academic staff member, the share of foreign academics and the share of foreign students.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Vladimír Smutný and Daria Kashcheeva new members of Oscar-awarding academy

    07/01/2020

    The American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), which is responsible for awarding the annual top film awards known as the Oscars, revealed its list of new members on Tuesday. Among them are Czech cameraman Vladimír Smutný and Oscar nominated FAMU student Daria Kashcheeva.

    Mr Smutný was praised by AMPAS for his work on Oscar winning Czech 1996 film Kolja and last year’s The Painted Bird, which was selected as the Czech entry for the Best International Feature Film for last year’s Academy Awards.

    Ms Kashcheeva, who was born in Tajikistan, received many international awards last year for her animated short Dcera (Daughter), which featured puppets filmed in an innovative documentary-like style.

    Other new members of AMPAS include actors such as Florence Pugh, or Ben Mendelsohn, as well as directors Ari Aster and Robert Eggers.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Health Ministry launches COVID-19 regional risk map

    07/01/2020

    The Ministry of Health has launched a new webpage which updates the level of risk in individual regions of the Czech Republic on a daily basis. The estimates are made on the bases of growth in cases, hospitalisation levels and other trends over the past weeks. In case of a marked increase of risk in a specific region, the wearing of facemasks will again become compulsory.

    Six colours, from white to black, indicate the stage of risk in which a region finds itself. Currently the map shows either none, or only low levels of new coronavirus cases across all regions with the exception of the far eastern tip of the country on the border with Poland’s Silesian Voivodship.

    The webpage can be accessed here: https://koronavirus.mzcr.cz/aktualni-epidemiologicka-situace-v-regionech...

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Antonín Panenka selected into 1980s Austrian league’s starting eleven

    07/01/2020

    Austrian sports journalists and historians have picked retired Czech footballer Antonín Panenka into their ideal starting eleven in the 1980s Austrian league.

    Panenka, who is perhaps most famous for his winning penalty in the UEFA Euro 1976 where his softly-chipped ball up the middle of the goal startled viewers with its cold confidence, played in the Austrian league throughout the 1980s. As an attacking midfielder in Rapid Vienna from 1981-1985 he scored 63 goals in 127 games and won two Bundesliga titles as well as the Austrian Cup.

    The selection of an ideal team for every decade in which the Austrian Bundesliga has been played started last year with the ideal eleven of the 1970s. The project should culminate in 2024 with celebrations of the fiftieth anniversary of the league.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • Black Lives Matter slogan is racist, says Zeman

    07/01/2020

    The Czech president, Miloš Zeman, says the slogan Black Lives Matter is racist. Speaking at an event at the US Ambassador’s Residence in Prague marking America’s Independence Day, Mr. Zeman said that the slogan was racist because all lives mattered.

    The head of state said the independence of citizens in the Czech Republic and the US was currently under threat. This danger cannot be ignored but must be withstood, he said. Mr. Zeman also criticised the unrest seen on streets in some American cities following the police killing of George Floyd.

    Author: Ian Willoughby
  • Facemask requirement now dropped in most parts of country

    07/01/2020

    From Wednesday, people in most parts of the Czech Republic do not have to wear facemasks on public transport or inside public buildings, in the latest easing of coronavirus restrictions. There are exceptions in the Moravian-Silesian Region and in Prague, where it is still compulsory to cover one’s mouth and nose in some places.

    In addition bars and restaurants in most parts of the country are now allowed to open past 11 pm. Consuming food is once again permitted in cinema halls.

    Author: Ian Willoughby

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