Senate backs proposals over change in MP immunity legislation

The upper house of Parliament has backed two proposals to change legislation regarding MP immunity. Under the first, which was drafted by the opposition Social Democrats, TOP 09 and the Christian Democrats, MPs could be criminally prosecuted even while they are serving as deputies and without being stripped of their immunity or prior approval from the chairman of Parliament. The Civic Democrats have criticized this proposal as “legally faulty”. Under their draft, MP immunity would be restricted significantly, and only apply to acts of speech and voting in Parliament. Deputy leader of the Social Democrats Jiří Dienstbier has labelled this proposal “absurd”.

Latest News

  • Data analysts: lockdown will be inevitable

    10/29/2020

    According to the Centre for Modelling of Biological and Social Processes (BISOP) a strict lockdown will be unavoidable if the epidemic is to be brought under control by Christmas.

    It should also include a ban on people meeting outside work and family, the centre said in a press release. The BISOP research team consists of seventeen scientists from the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Charles University and the CERGE-EI institute.

    According to the centre’s executive director René Levínský a strict lockdown would mean a reduction in contacts by 60 to 70 percent, presence in the workplace by 50 to 60 percent, compulsory face masks and a high level of compliance with the protective measures enforced.

    A recent survey showed that a third of Czechs oppose the restrictions and 27 percent still refuse to wear face masks.

  • Number of newly registered Covid-19 cases hits new high

    10/29/2020

    The number of newly registered Covid-19 cases reached 12,977 on Wednesday, the highest number yet on a non-work day.

    The number of people hospitalized and those in a serious condition continues to grow steeply, as does the death toll.

    175,000 people are currently fighting the infection, over 6,600 people are hospitalized with Covid-19, of which close to a 1,000 are in a serious condition. The death toll has reached 2,675.

  • President Zeman honours 38 personalities on Czechoslovak Independence Day

    10/28/2020

    In an address to the nation on the occasion of Czechoslovak Independence Day, President Miloš Zeman said the holiday should be a celebration of national pride in the outstanding people who had shaped the country’s history.

    He expressed regret that due to the coronavirus epidemic he could not hand out high state distinctions to those deserving of the honour at Prague Castle, thanking them for their outstanding contribution to the country’s development.

    The list of 38 laureates would be made public and the awards would be presented to them in a year’s time, Mr. Zeman said.

    Among those honoured with the country’s highest distinction, the Order of the White Lion, are WWII  hero Miloslav Masopust and war pilots František Chábera and Josef Koukal decorated in memoriam; , likewise legionary and resistance fighter Heliodor Píka, victim of a communist judicial murder.

    As the president announced earlier, he also awarded the country’s highest state distinction to the outgoing Minister of Health Roman Prymula for his good work in managing the first wave of the coronavirus epidemic. The president likewise honoured selected members of the integrated rescue system in the fight against the coronavirus epidemic.

    The President of the Constitutional Court Pavel Rychetský received the Order of Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, and military historian Eduard Stehlík was awarded a Medal of Merit.

    Czech pop idol Karel Gott, who died last year, was awarded in memoriam.

  • Church of St. Michael ravaged by fire

    10/28/2020

    The wooden Orthodox Church of St. Michael in the Kinský Garden in Prague was ravaged by fire on Wednesday afternoon. Despite efforts to save the 17th century building the main tower of the church collapsed and the church burnt down to the beams.

    The Church of St. Michael was relocated from the village of Medvědovce near Mukačevo in today’s Ukraine to Prague in 1929 to celebrate the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the annexation of Carpathian Ruthenia into then-Czechoslovakia. It is part of the collections of the Ethnographic Museum. No one was reported injured. The cause of the fire is being investigated.

  • Weather forecast

    10/28/2020

    Thursday should be cloudy to overcast with rain and day temperatures between 9 and 13 degrees Celsius.

  • PM tells Czechs: We will come out of this test stronger

    10/28/2020

    Speaking on the 102nd anniversary of the country’s founding, Prime Minister Andrej Babiš called on Czechs to pull together to overcome the coronavirus pandemic, saying the country would come out of the test stronger and return to its former economic successes.

    Prague Mayor Zdeněk Hřib reminded Czechs that the country had overcome many crisis in the past and would do so again with solidarity and discipline.

    He said the dedication of the country’s doctors, nurses and emergency crews should serve as an inspiration in these difficult times.

  • Culture Ministry hands out state awards in the arts sphere

    10/28/2020

    The Czech Ministry of Culture traditionally handed out awards in the arts and culture sphere on the occasion of Czechoslovak Independence Day.

    Due to the coronavirus restrictions the names of the laureates were announced online.

    Michal Ajvaz received the Prize for Literature, Blanka Stárková for Translation.

    The late Czech-born film director Miloš Forman received an award for lifelong contribution to cinematography in memoriam.

    The list of 2020 laureates also includes Jiří Tichota from the folk spiritual quintet and former artistic director, now artistic advisor of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival Eva Zaoralová.

    The names of the eight winners can be found on the ministry‘s website.

  • Several hundred people protest against coronavirus restrictions

    10/28/2020

    Several hundred people took to the streets of Prague to protest against government measures aimed at bringing the coronavirus epidemic under control on Wednesday.

    The biggest protest took place on Prague's Namesti republiky square where police officers and the anti-riot squad intervened to enforce the government-imposed health restrictions by forming a barrier to keep large groups of protesters apart.

    Current government measures against the spread of Covid-19 allow demonstrations with a maximum of 100 participants.

    The speakers addressing the crowd accused the government of enforcing measures that did not work but impoverished the nation.

  • Independence Day celebrations low-key

    10/28/2020

    Celebrations of Czechoslovak Independence Day are low-key this year due to the ongoing pandemic.

    The traditional award-giving ceremony at Prague Castle has been cancelled as has the ceremony at Vitkov Hill at which the country’s top officials, war veterans and church dignitaries lay wreaths at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

    The country’s top officials and political leaders are visiting Vitkov Hill individually to lay wreaths and flowers at the memorial.

    Prague Castle will release a list of those who have been awarded high state distinctions on the occasion of the public holiday and President Miloš Zeman will address the nation on national television.

    Planned cultural events have had to go online and Czech Television is featuring a series of special programs to mark the 102  anniversary of Czechoslovakia’s founding.

  • Number of newly registered Covid-19 cases hits new high

    10/28/2020

    The number of newly registered Covid-19 cases reached 15,663 on Tuesday, an increase by 400 on last weeks record.

    The number of people hospitalized and those in a serious condition continues to grow steeply, as does the death toll.

    170,000 people are currently fighting the infection, over 6,000 people are hospitalized with Covid-19, of which close to 900 are in a serious condition. The death toll has reached 2,547.