Sunday, January 8, 2012

News 1.8.2012

Copyright (c) 2012 Radio Prague (Cesky Rozhlas 7 - Radio Praha)

News Sunday, January 8th, 2012

By: Sarah Borufka

* Prime Minister Petr Necas has defended the government's reform
policies in a Sunday TV appearance.

* Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg has called on Germany to
adopt a more careful and modest approach in its EU policy.

* Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek has announced that further state
budget cuts of 30 billion Czech crowns will be necessary.

* Czech cross-country skier Stanislav Rezac won the traditional
Jizerska padesatka cross-country skiing race on Sunday.

* Speed-skater Martina Sablikova has won this year's European speed
skating championships, her fourth consecutive victory at the event.

Czech prime minister defends government's reform policies

Czech Prime Minister Petr Necas, in a Sunday TV appearance, defended
his government's reform policies, stating that he opposition's
criticism of them is unjustified. The opposition Social Democrats had
ample time to weigh in on the reforms; their recent challenge of the
reform package in the Constitutional Court is merely an attempt to
block the lower house's work for several months, he said. He added that
the changes in unemployment legislation had created a system that
motivates persons without work to seek employment, citing figures that
put the Czech Republic at the sixth-lowest unemployment rank within the
EU. Mr. Necas said that in the future, the country needed to further
invest into research and innovation to remain competitive.

Czech Foreign Minister calls on Germany to adopt more careful approach
in EU policy

Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg has called on Germany to
adopt a more modest and careful approach in its European policy. In an
interview with the German weekly Der Spiegel, Mr. Schwarzenberg said
that smaller EU countries felt taken aback by the private meetings
between German chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nikolas
Sarkozy. It was not appropriate for these two big countries to discuss
issues amongst themselves and then merely inform other EU member states
of their decisions, he said. He also criticized Germany for presenting
itself as a role model for the rest of Europe. He added that this was
no time for small-mindedness in EU politics. The interview with the
Czech politician will be published in Germany on Monday.

Finance Minister says further budget cuts of 30 billion Czech crowns

Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek has announced that additional cuts
of 30 billion Czech crowns will have to be made to the 2012 state
budget. In a debate program on Czech TV on Sunday, Mr. Kalousek said
that cuts would have to be made in administration and government
budgets and that the state would also have to freeze some of its
investments. The Finance Ministry is set to present its further
austerity measures at the end of this month.

The 2012 state budget deficit of 105 billion crowns was approved in
December. However, it was tailored to April's growth forecast and MPs
conceded that it would most likely have to be revised.

Czech cross-country skier Stanislav Rezac wins Jizerska padesatka
cross-country skiing race

The Jizerska padesatka cross-country skiing race was held on Sunday,
attracting hundreds of amateur enthusiasts as well as professional
skiers. Czech cross-country skier Stanislav Rezac won the race for the
third time in his career. Previously, he had taken the title in 2000
and 2001. Commenting on his victory, he said it was the domestic title
he considered most important and that he was pleased with his
achievement. The Swedish Jimmie Johnsson came in second, ahead of
Norway's Jorgen Aukland.

Speed skating: Martina Sablikova wins European speed skating

Czech speed skater Martina Sablikova, world-record holder in the 5,000
and 10,000 meters speed skating discipline, on Sunday won the European
speed skating championships in Budapest. She came in first in the
5,000-meters race, ahead of the German Claudia Pechstein and the Dutch
Ireen Wust. This is the fourth time that the two-time Czech Olympics
winner is taking home the title in the European championships.

Cross-country skiing: Lukas Bauer comes in sixth at Tour de Ski

Czech cross-country skier Lukas Bauer has come in sixth at the Tour de
Ski. Martin Jaks, also of the Czech Republic, came in ninth at the
cross-country skiing event, which finished with the final climb up the
Italian Val die Fiemme on Sunday. Swiss Dario Cologna won the
competition, the Swedish Marcus Hellner came in second. Bauer has won
the Tour de Ski twice in his career, in 2011 and in 2009.

Heavy snowfalls complicating road traffic; meteorologists issue ice

Heavy snow that has been falling in the north of the country as well as
in the Hradec Kralove region is causing traffic complications. Several
accidents happened on Saturday afternoon, among them two bus accidents
as well as a collision of two cars. No one was injured. Road
maintenance crews are struggling to deal with the consequences of the
heavy snow. For the Moravian-Silesian region, meteorologists have
issued an ice warning and have called on drivers to exercise caution.


The weekend brings overcast skies with rain and snow in the higher
altitudes. Daytime temperatures between -1 and 5 degrees Celsius.

Articles posted on today

The Czech "Scumbag X"

This week's Sunday Music Show is devoted to a musician going by the
name of Xindl X -a musician who combines rap, folk, hip hop, jazz and
blues as the mood takes him; a musician whose lyrics are laced with
irony and who says he writes protest songs which portray a world
without God, morals or love -a world of scumbags of the generation X.

This e-mail is sent to you automatically according to the settings you
chose at To change the settings, click
here. (C) 2012, Radio Prague - the international service of Czech Radio,
all rights reserved., E-mail: