Press Review

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The Czech Republic's decision to support Turkey in the dispute which is currently rocking NATO makes the headlines in many of Thursday's papers. As for photos, stars of the Czech football team feature strongly after their shock defeat of European champions France in Paris on Wednesday night.

The Czech Republic's decision to support Turkey in the dispute which is currently rocking NATO makes the headlines in many of Thursday's papers. As for photos, stars of the Czech football team feature strongly after their shock defeat of European champions France in Paris on Wednesday night.

A year after a bill allowing for access to -files of the Communist-era secret police, the StB, came into effect, the Interior Ministry is looking for a way to permanently block access to some files, reports MLADA FRONTA DNES. The files in question concern industrial espionage carried out in the west by communist spies. Patents were stolen, especially in the chemical, cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries.

If the files came to light, western companies could sue the Czech state for large amounts. A list of former StB agents due to go on the Internet next month (a kind of legal version of the infamous 'Cibulka's List' from the early 1990s) will not contain the names of those who took part in industrial espionage, reports the daily.

By the way, MLADA FRONTA DNES also carries a photo of Interior Minister Stanislav Gross dressed up like a spy in a mac and hat and smoking a fat cigar. It must be said that the youthful-looking Mr Gross looks more like a boy at Halloween than a figure from a Graham Greene novel.

Another photo in the same paper shows the first baby born in the Coexistence Village in north Moravia, which is a project aimed at showing whites and Romanies can live together in harmony. Baby Anyta Klimova is proof of that: her parents are a mixed couple.

LIDOVE NOVINY carries an interesting interview with Jiri Loewy, who has been a reporter since 1945 and recently won the top prize in Czech journalism, the Ferdinand Peroutka award. While in exile Mr Loewy published an opposition paper called Pravo lidu.

Jiri Loewy, who has lived in Germany and the Netherlands, says the Czech press could do with more political correctness, even though the term is often denigrated. He also chastises the press in this country for being too politicised and party-oriented, and for not reporting well on international affairs.

Pity the poor residents of Prague's Karlin district. The area suffered the most during last August's floods and many there are still living without proper heating. Now there is more bad news for them in the Prague section of MLADA FRONTA DNES: they will have to do without trams for another six months. The reason: destroyed gas, water and sewerage pipes under the main street in Karlin, Sokolovska.