Tuesday, October 23, 2012

News 10.23.2012

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

News Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012

By: Daniela Lazarova

* Six rebel Civic Democrat deputies who may bring down the government
over controversial tax-hikes are holding their ground.

* The finance minister has announced he will revise next year's state
budget in view of overcoming the hurdle.

* Opposition parties have accused the government of letting the country
slide into chaos.

* Independent presidential candidate Jan Fischer has said he would not
let the Communist Party enter into government.

* Adverse weather conditions have worsened the smog situation in many
parts of the country.

Rebel deputies holding their ground over tax hikes

Six rebel Civic Democrat deputies who may bring down the government
over controversial tax-hikes are holding their ground. A meeting on
Tuesday morning with a special party working group striving to find a
compromise solution failed to break the deadlock. The six rebels are
refusing to support a package of tax hikes which the government claims
are inevitable for it to meet its fiscal target -i.e. bring the gap in
public finances to below 3 percent of GDP in 2013. The rebels' refusal
to support tax hikes puts the government's fate on the line since the
prime minister has linked the bill to a vote of confidence in the
centre-right government.

Finance minister says he will revise state budget

Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek said shortly after the break-down of
talks that the government would withdraw the proposed state budget for
2013 from the lower house and revise it. The finance minister said that
in view of the deadlock within the Civic Democratic Party he would have
to review the expenditures side of the budget and consider how the loss
in revenues could be made up for by cuts in the public sector. He
stressed that he was not prepared to increase the gap in public
spending because of the tax dispute. A new draft budget should be ready
within 30 days.

Opposition slams ruling coalition for inability to govern

Social Democrat leader Bohuslav Sobotka has accused the government of
letting the country slide into chaos and noted that the ruling
coalition should either get on with the task of ruling the country or
resign. Mr. Sobotka said it was unacceptable for the ruling coalition
to continue in the present manner when it was not clear whether it had
a majority in the lower house, the votes to pass next year's state
budget, what taxes would be in place next year and whether the pension
reform would be in force or not. Communist Party leader Vojtech Filip
joined the criticism saying the members of the ruling coalition were
not serving the country but merely hanging onto power.

Deputy prime minister says church restitutions may have to be reviewed

Deputy Prime Minister Karolina Peake has not ruled out fresh
negotiations on church restitutions in light of the controversy over
next year's state budget. The deputy prime minister said that the
church restitution bill in its present form had been agreed on the
basis of proposed state revenues which were now being put to question.
Under the proposed legislation, the Czech state would return some 56
percent of the physical property worth around 75 billion crowns; for
the rest, Czech churches and religious societies would receive some 60
billion crowns in compensation over a period of 30 years.

Jan Fisher would not let communists enter into government

Independent presidential candidate Jan Fischer has said he would not
let the communists enter into government. Mr. Fischer, a former
caretaker prime minister who is one of the hot candidates for the
presidential post, said he considers the Communist Party an extremist
party which had not fully accepted the post-1989 democratic changes in
the country and had a highly negative stand to the European Union and
NATO. Mr. Fisher said he would be extremely careful even in accepting a
minority left-wing government with support from the Communist Party.
Mr. Fischer himself was a member of the Czechoslovak Communist Party
from 1980 to 1989.

Presidential candidate Dienstbier slams rival

Rival candidate for the presidency Jiri Dienstbier slammed Mr. Fisher's
statement on the grounds that it was unconstitutional. Mr. Dienstbier,
who is the official candidate of the Social Democratic Party, noted
that that the Czech constitution did not give the president the power
to decide who should or should not be in government depending on his
own preference, he merely appointed a prime minister designate whose
task it was to form a government. The constitution is binding for all
citizens, the president included, and Mr. Fisher would do well to study
it before resorting to populist statements, Jiri Dienstbier said.

President of Kazakhstan in Prague

The president of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbajev is on a two-day state
visit to the Czech Republic. President Nazarbajev's talks with Czech
top officials are expected to focus largely on business relations and
the two sides are expected to sign a dozen agreements to the tune of
155 million euros in the course of his visit. The Kazakh delegation
includes four cabinet ministers and 45 leading entrepreneurs.

Smog situation worsening around the country

Adverse weather conditions have worsened the smog situation around the
country including in the Czech capital Prague. Dust particles in the
air exceed permitted levels in eight Prague districts with the worst
situation reported to be in Karlin, Prague 8. The authorities in the
Moravian-Silesian region have called a smog alert and are considering
asking the biggest industrial firms in the vicinity of Ostrava and
Karvina to scale down production. Children and elderly people as well
as chronically ill patients have been advised to stay indoors. No let
up is expected until Friday when the weather should change.

Depeche Mode to perform in Prague next summer

The iconic British band Depeche Mode has put Prague on its 2013 world
tour. Their concert is scheduled for July 23rd at Prague's Vrsovice
stadium and tickets should start selling at the end of October. The
price range is between 1200 crowns to 2000 crowns. Depeche Mode last
performed in the Czech Republic at Prague's O2 Arena in 2010.

Tennis: Berdych secures spot at ATP World Tour finals

Czech tennis player Tomas Berdych has secured a spot in the ATP World
Tour Finals in London, becoming the sixth qualifier in an elite field
of eight. Coming off of a tournament victory in Stockholm on Sunday,
Berdych joins other world-class players Roger Federer, Andy Murray,
David Ferrer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. Two single spots remain
open; it is also far from certain that Nadal, who is recovering from a
lingering knee injury, will play. Berdych, ranked No. 6 in the world,
reached the prestigious tournament's semi-final stage last year. This
year marks his third consecutive appearance.


Wednesday should be grey and rainy with day temperatures between 10 and
14 de

Articles posted on www.radio.cz today

Small Vrsovice chateau - an old landmark rising slowly from the ruins

Standing atop of a small hill, with a tramline swooping around it,
punctuated by a baroque Roman Catholic church on one side and a
modernist Hussite church on the other, Rangherka, or the small Vrsovice
chateau, contains within its own story the history of the surrounding
district as well. The original building was put up just as the then
village of Vrsovice began to grow and develop rapidly. Now, unlike the
surrounding neighbourhood, it is a sad sight. The prominent
neo-renaissance building is in ruins, with reconstruction having
dragged on for more than six years, although the past year has seen the
work finally intensify.


Czech Army to lay off 1,500 personnel in 2013

Next year, the Czech Army will see 1,500 members of the military,
especially high-ranking officers, laid off, part of necessary changes
in a period of strict austerity measures and budget cuts. As part of
the plan, the army will close headquarters in both Olomouc and Stara
Boleslav, following up on the layoffs of almost 3,000 military and
civilian personnel three years ago.


Memorial plaque to dissident Zdenek Urbanek unveiled on his Prague home

A memorial plaque to Zdenek Urbanek, a writer, translator and a close
friend of the late Vaclav Havel, was unveiled at the weekend at his
Prague home. Zdenek Urbanek, who died in 2008, was a significant figure
of Czechoslovakia's the anti-communist opposition, and it was at his
house in the Prague district of Stresovice where the human rights
manifesto Charter 77 began its journey.


This e-mail is sent to you automatically according to the settings you
chose at http://www.radio.cz/en/subscribe. To change the settings, click
here. (C) 2012, Radio Prague - the international service of Czech Radio,
all rights reserved. http://www.radio.cz, E-mail: cr@radio.cz

Unsubscribe: http://www.radio.cz/en/subscribe?del_account&email3=elninochina@yahoo.com.cn