Wednesday, February 13, 2013

News 2.13.2013

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright (c) 2013 Radio Prague (Cesky Rozhlas 7 - Radio Praha)

News Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

By: Masha Volynsky

* The lower house has approved a constitutional amendment which would
abolish lawmakers and judges' lifelong immunity from prosecution.

* Women will have to pay the same insurance premiums as men, according
to a constitutional amendment passed by the Chamber of Deputies on
Wednesday.

* The Pirate Party has filed a lawsuit against President Vaclav Klaus
over the release of information about the authors of the presidential
amnesty.

* The Czech branch of the international PEN club has issued an open
letter calling on President Vaclav Klaus to refrain from attacking his
predecessor, Vaclav Havel in public.

* Scientists have identified a new species of moth flies in the Podyje
park in southwest Moravia.



========================================================================
Lower house moves to restrict lawmakers' immunity from prosecution
------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Chamber of Deputies has approved a constitutional amendment which
would abolish lawmakers and judges' lifelong immunity from prosecution.
Under the proposed amendment, they would only be protected for the
duration of their mandate, unless their peers vote to strip them of
their immunity. The bill was approved by 148 deputies, well over the
120 votes necessary to amend the constitution. Its fate in the Senate
is unclear since a similar proposal was rejected by the upper chamber
only last year.


========================================================================
Bill to raise insurance rates for women
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Men and women will be subject to the same insurance and pension savings
rates, according to a bill that was approved on Wednesday by the lower
house of Parliament. Currently, Czech insurance companies and private
pension funds offer lower premiums for women on many of their products.
According to the Finance Minister, Miroslav Kalousek, the new bill had
to be introduced in order to comply with the decision of the European
Court that said the current system conflicts with the principle of
gender equality. Opposition parties as well as Mr Kalousek himself have
criticized the new regulation, which may cause insurance rates for
women to drastically increase in some cases.


========================================================================
Zeman's list of constitutional judge nominees is shaping up
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Among possible nominees for Constitutional Court judges that
president-elect Milos Zeman is considering are expert on criminal law
Jaroslav Fenyk and commercial law specialist Irena Pelikanova,
according to the website of the weekly Respekt magazine. As of the
beginning of February, the Constitutional Court has 12 out of the total
15 judges. The president nominates new judges, who are then approved by
the Senate. Mr Zeman has also said he is planning to nominate the
current chief judge Pavel Rychetsky for another term, once his current
term expires in August.


========================================================================
Pirates file lawsuit against President Klaus
------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Pirate Party has filed a lawsuit against President Vaclav Klaus,
for concealing information about the authors of the presidential
amnesty that was issued at the beginning of the year. The party is
arguing that the president's office has the obligation to release the
names of the authors under the freedom of information law. The head of
the office Jiri Wiegl had rejected a request for the information from
the party's chairman. A number of other groups and politicians,
including the deputy chairman of the Social Democratic party Lubomir
Zaoralek, have issued public complaints about the lack of information
about the amnesty.


========================================================================
Website: Zeman campaign received almost CZK 1.5 million in cash
------------------------------------------------------------------------

President-elect Milos Zeman received nearly 1.5 million crowns in
campaign donations in cash, the news site Aktualne.cz reported. By
comparison, donors gave his rivals for the post of head of state sums
totaling tens of thousands of crowns. Some of the donations to Mr.
Zeman's campaign, which were lodged in his campaign account in person,
were in the hundreds of thousands of crowns. The head of the Czech
branch of the corruption watchdog Transparency International, David
Ondracka, told Aktualne.cz that the sums created considerable suspicion
as they left no traces in the banking system. Mr. Zeman's campaign team
refused to make any comment on the matter.


========================================================================
German police arrest marihuana trafficking group
------------------------------------------------------------------------

The German police and customs officers have arrested a four-member
Berlin-based group that was smuggling marihuana from the Czech Republic
into Germany. Three men and a woman had been under surveillance for
several months prior to being arrested on Monday evening while
returning from the Czech Republic with 50 kilograms of marihuana. The
Bavarian and Saxon officials have criticized the allegedly lax Czech
drug regulations many times in the past.


========================================================================
PEN club criticizes Klaus for disrespecting Havel
------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Czech branch of the PEN club has issued an open letter calling on
the Czech President Vaclav Klaus to refrain from attacking his
predecessor Vaclav Havel. President Klaus, whose second and last term
in office will end in less than a month, has made a number of public
statements recently that expressed disrespect for the former president,
playwright and lauded dissident. In an interview for a Polish
newspaper, the current president referred to the late Mr Havel as a
leftist extremist.


========================================================================
Scientists identify a new species of flies
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Scientists have discovered a new type of fly that is believed to
inhabit only the Podyje National Park in the southwestern Moravian
Znojmo region. The fly is from the moth fly family and was given the
name trichomyia hardeggensis. Entomologists Marketa Omelkova and Jan
Jezek from Brno's Masaryk University were in charge of the fly's
classification. Over 70 species of flies in Moravia are currently
endangered, because of the disappearing wetlands that the species are
dependent on.


========================================================================
Most accidents in one day since 2008
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Largely due to heavy snow, Tuesday saw the most car accidents on Czech
roads in more than four years. The police registered 521 accidents - a
sad daily record that was last surpassed on three separate days in the
fall of 2008. Last year, the highest number of accidents in one day was
482 on 15 February. There were two fatalities during the day on Tuesday.


========================================================================
World Radio Day celebrated by Czech Radio
------------------------------------------------------------------------

The World Radio Day is being celebrated all over the worldthe for the
second year on Wednesday. The day marks the occasion of the founding of
the United Nations radio in 1946. Several Czech Radio stations prepared
special programming for the occasion. Czech Radio, a public
broadcaster, is also celebrating its 90th birthday this year.


========================================================================
Weather
------------------------------------------------------------------------

It should be overcast throughout the day with occasional snowfall.
Daytime temperatures should range between 0 and -2 degrees Celsius.



++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Articles posted on www.radio.cz today
------------------------------------------------------------------------



Straw houses: new trend in Green Living
------------------------------------------------------------------------

When it comes to housing most young Czechs dream of a trendy city flat
but some pioneers of Green Living are heading out of town to re-build
country cottages and acquire the skill of making their own home-grown
produce.

http://radio.cz/en/section/panorama/straw-houses-new-trend-in-green-living


Lower house makes umpteenth attempt to abolish lawmakers' life-long
immunity from prosecution
------------------------------------------------------------------------

The lower house of Parliament on Wednesday approved a bill which would
abolish lawmakers' lifelong immunity from prosecution. Under the
present amendment deputies and senators would only have immunity for
the duration of their mandate, unless their peers vote to strip them of
it. Although the bill's approval is seen as a step in the right
direction, its fate in the Senate is far from certain.

http://radio.cz/en/section/curraffrs/lower-house-makes-umpteenth-attempt-to-abolish-lawmakers-life-long-immunity-from-prosecution


Agriculture Ministry sanctions on-farm slaughter of crocodiles
------------------------------------------------------------------------

From March 1, the on-farm slaughter of crocodiles - and the processing
of crocodile meat for sale to consumers - will be allowed in the Czech
Republic. The Agriculture Ministry approved the regulation change
following consultation with Brussels when it became apparent that a
crocodile farm in southern Moravia housing more than 200 specimens had
no legal way of culling its crocs.

http://radio.cz/en/section/curraffrs/agriculture-ministry-sanctions-on-farm-slaughter-of-crocodiles-approves-processing-and-sale-of-croc-meat






------------------------------------------------------------------------
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) 2013, 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