Tuesday, May 29, 2012

News 5.29.2012

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

News Tuesday, May 29th, 2012

By: Sarah Borufka

* Demonstrators gathered in front of two government ministries on
Tuesday to protest reforms.

* A state prosecutor has granted former governor David Rath, who is
charged with corruption, permission to attend a session of the lower
house in which deputies are to decide whether or not he should be
stripped of his immunity.

* The new faction around deputy prime minister Karolina Peak, LIDEM, on
Tuesday received official party status.

* An exhibition of photographs taken of late president Vaclav Havel
during his time in office is set open in Prague in mid-June.

* Czech national team coach Michal Bilek has presented his picks for
the Czech squad of the Euro 2012 soccer championships.

Demonstrators hold protests in front government ministries

Demonstrators gathered in front of the education and culture ministries
in protest of reforms and austerity measures. Activists, students and
unions associated with the Stop the Government movement on Tuesday held
protest happenings in front of the two ministries, including outdoor
theatre, concerts and public debates. A planned blockade failed for
lack of participants.

Tuesday's event is to be the first of five such "blockades" of
ministries planned for the next two weeks. Prime Minister Petr Necas
has called blocking access to ministries a violent and democratically
illegitimate act. It was legitimate to express one's opinion freely, he
said, but trying to keep people from going to work was unacceptable and
could lead to 'jeopardizing freedom'. He added that the relevant
authorities should react accordingly.

State prosecutor grants MP charged with corruption permission to attend
lower house session on stripping him of his immunity

Former Central Bohemian governor David Rath, who is currently under
arrest on suspicion of corruption, will be able to attend a session in
the lower house of Parliament, of which he is still a member, in which
deputies will vote on whether or not Mr Rath should be stripped of his
immunity. Mr Rath had filed for permission to attend the session on
Monday with the state prosecutor for the Usti nad Labem region Lenka
Bradacova. She granted it, on condition that he only attends the period
during which his case is discussed. Deputies are yet to decide whether
or not this session of the lower house will be open to the public.

New faction around deputy prime minister Karolina Peake gains official
party status

The new faction around deputy prime minister Karolina Peake, formerly
of Public Affairs, has officially been registered as a party. Mrs Peake
said on Tuesday that she was glad the registration of the party had
been successful and thanked all 1800 citizens who had signed a petition
in support of her new LIDEM party. Mrs Peake founded the group after
walking out on junior coalition partner Public Affairs in early May
over the way the party presented itself. Her split with the party and
the subsequent walk-out of some of its other members cast serious doubt
over the future of the government coalition; however, it survived a
vote of confidence.

Madeleine Albright receives Medal of Freedom

US President Barack Obama on Tuesday awarded the Medal of Freedom to
Madeleine Albright, who was born in Czechoslovakia and fled the country
with her parents to escape the Nazi occupation. She spent some time in
England before immigrating to the US in 1948. Albright was the first
woman to hold the nation's top diplomatic post of secretary of state.
Among this year's recipients are John Glenn, the first American to
orbit the Earth, and legendary singer-songwriter Bob Dylan. The Medal
of Freedom is America's highest civilian honor. It is presented to
individuals who have contributed to the security or national interests
of the United States, world peace or cultural endeavors.

Czech president signs into law legislation on emission fees

Czech President Vaclav Klaus has signed into law legislation that will
gradually increase emission fees. On Tuesday, the president ratified a
law under which firms with a high level of emissions will have to pay
4200 Czech crowns per ton of CO2 emitted starting next year. The fee
will gradually be increased to 14,700 crowns by 2021. The new
regulation will mostly affect large corporations. The Confederation of
Industry of the Czech Republic opposes it.

Czech support of European integration steeply declined, survey finds

Czech support of European integration is on the decline, according to a
fresh survey by the American Pew Research Center. Among all eight EU
member states polled, the Czech Republic sees the membership most
critically. The survey also found that Czechs were especially critical
of their prime minister's approach to the debt crisis in the Eurozone.
The Pew Research Center concludes that the financial crisis within the
union has also spurred a deep crisis of member countries' trust in the
EU. Among the countries polled were Germany, France, Spain, Italy,
Greece and the non-Eurozone members: the Czech Republic along with
Poland and Great Britain.

Exhibition featuring pictures of late president Vaclav Havel set to
open in Old Town Square

A new exhibition of pictures of the late ex-president Vaclav Havel is
set to open in the Prague City Gallery on Old Town Square on June 15.
On display will be mostly photographs taken during his time in office -
shots from his official visits abroad but also those that were taken
behind the scenes. The exhibition has been organized by the Czech News
Agency CTK in memory of the late president. The agency has some 12,000
pictures of Mr Havel in its archives. The exhibition runs through July

Czech citizen killed in New Zealand

A 31-year-old Czech woman was found dead in New Zealand. Police said on
Tuesday that the woman's body had been found on Sunday and that it is
likely she became the victim of rape before she was killed. Police are
investigating the case.

National team coach presents picks for European Football Championship

Czech national team coach Michal Bilek on Tuesday presented his picks
for the European Football Championship. Among the 23-man squad are
Arsenal midfielder Tomas Rosicky as well as Chelsea's Petr Cech.
Rosicky is still recovering from a calf injury but the national team
coach says he is confident that his condition will have improved by the
time the championship, co-hosted by Poland and the Ukraine, kicks off
on June 8. The Czech Republic faces Russia in their first game on June
8, followed by Greece and Poland in the group level of the tournament.

Petr Cech extends Chelsea contract to 2016

Czech soccer star Petr Cech has extended his contract with Chelsea
until the year 2016. Commenting on his new contract, Cech said he hoped
the next four years with his club would be as successful as the last
eight had been. Since joining the Premier League in 2004, Cech has made
over 360 appearances, won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and
two League Cups. In the recent Champions League finals, Cech helped
secure Chelsea's victory by saving three penalties, one in extra time
and two in the shootout. His new contract makes him one of the 20
best-paid soccer players internationally.


The weather will cool down in the middle of the week, with partly
cloudy to overcast skies and scattered showers. Daytime highs will
reach up to 21o Celsius.

Articles posted on www.radio.cz today

Dragon boats race for charity on the Vltava river

Symbolically in the year of the Dragon, the third Dragon Boat Charity
Challenge took place last Saturday on the Vltava river. The race is an
annual event organized by Rotary Club Prague International as a
fundraiser for charity.


Demonstrators hold protest happenings in front of Education and Culture

Demonstrators gathered outside of two government ministries on Tuesday
to protest against government reforms and austerity measures. The
all-day happening (which included outdoor concerts, theatre and public
debate) was organised by student activists and union reps behind the
Stop the Government movement. Already the event, the first of five
planned over the next two weeks, has drawn criticism from the prime


World Roma festival begins in Prague

They call it the biggest Roma culture festival in the world, and it's
back in Prague for the 14th year. The Khamoro, or World Roma Festival,
means nine days of some of the best gypsy bands from all corners of
Europe, but also a wide array of cultural and sociological events all
aimed at promoting unity and understanding.


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