Press Review

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The front pages of Wednesday's dailies share little in common. All the papers assign a varying degree of importance to a mining accident in North Moravia's Lazy mine that left one person dead and 28 injured. Most of today's papers also cover the new policy statement prepared by the government on Monday and now awaiting a confidence vote in parliament.

The front pages of Wednesday's dailies share little in common. All the papers assign a varying degree of importance to a mining accident in North Moravia's Lazy mine that left one person dead and 28 injured. Most of today's papers also cover the new policy statement prepared by the government on Monday and now awaiting a confidence vote in parliament.

Mlada fronta Dnes writes that Members of Parliament were bored to death listening to Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla reading the new policy statement out loud for two hours without a break. The paper cites a member of Mr Spidla's Social Democrats who explained that he decided to read out the document in full because members of the opposition had complained they hadn't had a chance to read the statement prior to Tuesday's session.

An ambassador criticised ministers - and then was sacked, reads the lead headline in Lidove noviny. The previous government dismissed Petr Pribik, ambassador to Pakistan and Afghanistan, on June 26 but no one has bothered to tell Mr. Pribik until now, although the official letter has yet to arrive to Mr. Pribik's address. The reasons for his dismissal seem to be rather unclear.

Mr. Pribik believes that he was removed from his post because in early June he criticised Defence Minister Jaroslav Tvrdik and ex-Foreign Minister Jan Kavan. Mr Pribik had made arrangements for both ministers to visit Afghanistan and meet with top country officials and the king. Two days prior to the departure, the ministers cancelled the visit and Mr. Pribik criticised them heavily.

Pravo informs the readers that the UK might impose visa regulations for Czech citizens. This would be in reaction to the increased number of Czech Romanies seeking asylum in Britain, writes the paper. However, the British Embassy has not confirmed any such information.

Moving back to Lidove noviny now - the paper recommends 10 of the most interesting Czech museums. The list includes a museum of matches in Susice, a museum of North Bohemian spiritualism and a museum of sewers and water-treating systems. The latter may not sound too appealing, but the paper assures readers that the extraordinary sewer exhibition is remarkable, as visitors are given the chance to see a network of sewers built between 1895 and 1906.

Mlada fronta Dnes writes about elementary school children who have succeeded in forcing through the creation of a new zebra crossing in front of their school and a new playground in their town. This is due to an Education Ministry financed project called Citizen, which encourages children to select an issue in their neighbourhood, find a solution and persuade local authorities to carry out what they had proposed. The project originated in California and Czech schools began working with it four years ago.

Eight young people spent their morning in a tent in front of Prague's City hall, says Mlada fronta Dnes. They came in belief that the City Council had a meeting with Prague's Safranka squat on the agenda, and that they could show their support to the squatters who are currently being evicted from a building that the City itself offered to them in 1997. But most of the City councillors are on holiday, and there was no meeting. After some minor conflicts with the police, the eight eventually gave up and left.

And finally, Hospodarske noviny carries a story about two freight ships produced in Petersburg's North shipyard that will soon have Czech ownership. Both ships will help Russia pay off part of its debts to the Czech Republic. The ships can sail on canals as well as at sea and if needed, they can handle sailing to the Far East, says the paper.

Author: Kamila Rosolová
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