• 07/17/2021

    The former Czech culture minister, Daniel Herman, was awarded the Charles IV Prize for fostering understanding among European nations at a conference of the Sudeten German Landsmannschaft in Munich on Saturday.

    Mr. Herman helped overcome historical animosities between the two nations linked to the atrocities committed by the Nazis and the post-war expulsion of Germans from Czechoslovakia.

    He was the first Czech government official to attend a meeting of the Landsmannschaft association in 2016, addressing the gathering as “Dear compatriots” and apologizing for the expulsion of Sudeten Germans after the war.

  • 07/16/2021

    The EC is ready to approve the Czech Republic’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan, a high-placed source at the Commission told the CTK news agency on Friday. According to the information received the EC is poised to make an announcement and EC President Ursula von der Leyen is expected to visit Prague on Monday for talks with Czech top officials. The plan will enable the Czech Republic to draw approximately 180 billion crowns from EU funds.

  • 07/16/2021

    Saturday should be clear to partly cloudy  with scattered showers and day temperatures between 22 and 26 degrees Celsius.

  • 07/16/2021

    Covid data indicate a new rise in the coronavirus epidemic which had been steadily receding since April, the head of the Institute For Health Information and Statistics Ladislav Dušek said on Friday. Mr. Dušek said the rise was slow but clearly apparent and was driven by the Indian variant spreading among young people who were not vaccinated. The government has been seeking ways to motivate more people get the vaccine, even warning that as of September tests would no longer be covered by health insurance.  On Thursday the Czech Republic registered 227 new cases of Covid-19. The reproduction number is currently at 1.3.

  • 07/16/2021

    The Pirate Party is suing Prime Minister Andrej Babiš for slander in connection with his claim that the party is planning to move migrants into people's flats or tax excess meters of real estate. The head of the party’s deputies’ group in the lower house, Jakub Michálek, said this was an outrageous lie spread to damage the party ahead of October’s general elections. Mr. Babiš has refused to apologize for his words, and further warned Czechs that the Pirate Party’s pro-migrant policy could make Czechs a minority in their home country in the not too distant future.

  • 07/16/2021

    The European Commission has once again urged the Czech government to address the fact that the Czech Republic lacks a reliable system to identify and prevent conflict of interest in the public sector. This is stated in a letter accompanying the last audit of the European Commission which concludes that the Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis has a conflict of interest because he continues to control his Agrofert business empire through trust funds. The Czech prime minister insists that he has no influence on the trust funds and has fully adhered to all the requirements of the Czech conflict of interest legislation. The Ministry of Regional Development received the letter from the EC’s auditors last week and has until September 8 to respond to it.

  • 07/16/2021

    The Vice-President of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans is on a two-day working visit to the Czech Republic to discuss the EC’s ambitious climate plan aiming to dramatically cut emissions by 2035. The Czech prime minister, Andrej Babis’ first reaction to the plan was cautious. He expressed the view that it may be overly ambitious, saying the European Commission’s plans for introducing electro mobility must be set in a way that will not harm Czech industry. In the early evening, Timmermans will travel to Ostrava where he is due to hold a round table debate with the Minister of Industry and Transport Karel Havlíček and the Minister of the Environment Richard Brabec and meet with business leaders and local government officials.

  • 07/16/2021

    Jiří Pos is likely to become the new chairman of the board at Prague Airport after being selected by the Ministry of Finance – the official representative of the state as a shareholder in the airport.

    Pos is currently serving as an executive at Karlovy Vary Airport, but was already once in charge of Prague Airport from 2011 to 2014. If the selection is approved by the Office of Government, Pos will replace Chairman Václav Řehoř, whose mandate has come to an end.

    Řehoř asked for an extension of his tenure in March, but was declined and a new tender for the position was launched in June.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • 07/16/2021

    Justice Minister Marie Benešová launched a disciplinary action against the former prosecutor general, Pavel Zeman, for his conduct during the restitution case of the Czernin family on Thursday.

    The case first drew attention in January when news site Seznam Zprávy reported that Pavel Zeman had privately interceded for Petr Habersberger, the owner of the boarding house near Třeboň and that he was personally involved in a restitution case concerning the land on which the businessman farmed. The lands were acquired several years ago by a descendant of the Czernin noble family.

    Speaking on Friday, Zeman, whose tenure as prosecutor general ended with resignation on June 30, denied any bias in the case and said that the launching of the disciplinary action by the justice minister shows why he had resigned. He refused to comment further, saying that he is unaware of the contents of the charge.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe
  • 07/15/2021

    Czech Foreign Minister Jakub Kulhánek met with representatives of the various parties represented in the Czech Parliament on Thursday to discuss priorities for the upcoming Czech EU presidency next year.

    The Czech Republic will want to focus on transatlantic cooperation and countering hybrid threats, according to a Foreign Ministry press release issued after the meeting. Priority will also be placed on the Indo-Pacific region, which is currently growing in geopolitical importance. The Czech Republic is also interested in organising two summits during its presidency, namely between the EU – US and EU – India.

    Mr Kulhánek said that he wants to hold more roundtables with Parliamentary parties in the following months.

    Author: Tom McEnchroe

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