Sunday, May 12, 2013

News 5.12.2013

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

News Sunday, May 12th, 2013

By: Daniela Lazarova

* Some 10,000 people took part in this year's Prague International
Marathon.

* A commemorative act at the graveside of Czech composer Bedrich
Smetana officially opened the 68th annual Prague Spring Music Festival
on Sunday.

* The results of an opinion poll conducted by the SANEP agency suggest
that the majority of Czechs consider the Institute for the Study of
Totalitarian Regimes a useless institution.

* One of the country's last surviving war heroes, Brigadier General
Zdenek Skarvada, has died at the age of 95.

* The Czech Republic lost 2:1 to Canada at the World Ice Hockey
Championship in Stockholm on Sunday, seriously jeopardizing its chances
of advancing to the quarterfinals.



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Prague Marathon attracts thousands
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Some 10,000 people put on their running shoes for this year's Prague
International Marathon and hundreds of onlookers turned up to cheer
them on. The first through the finishing line this year was Nicholas
Kemboi from Qatar who covered the 42 km distance in 2:08mins. The first
woman to reach the finishing line was Caroline Rotich from Kenya who
made it in 2:27mins. The marathon has gained increasing popularity
since it was established in 1995. It takes runners through the city
centre and has been voted one of the most beautiful in the world. In
view of the Boston bombing special security measures have been taken
for the event.


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Prague Spring Music Festival opens tonight
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A commemorative act at the graveside of Czech composer Bedrich Smetana
officially opened the 68th annual Prague Spring Music Festival on
Sunday. The prestigious festival traditionally begins with a rendition
of Smetana's cycle of symphonic poems My Country; this year it will be
performed by the French Radio Philharmonic Orchestra. Over the next
three weeks music lovers will be able to take their pick from 45
concerts, presenting leading international orchestras and soloists as
well as six opera performances at different venues in the Czech capital.


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Czechs increasingly skeptical regarding Institute for the Study of
Totalitarian Regimes
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The results of an opinion poll conducted by the SANEP agency suggest
that the majority of Czechs consider the Institute for the Study of
Totalitarian Regimes a useless institution. According to the poll
results 68.7 percent of respondents said the institute was obsolete and
73.3 percent said they did not believe it to be entirely independent
and objective in its research. Only 25 percent of respondents said they
believed it was fulfilling its mission and 26 percent of respondents
said that the institution had been hijacked by politicians for their
own ends. The poll was conducted at the beginning of the month as the
institute was undergoing a change of management and was racked by
controversy.


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Brigadier General Zdenek Skarvada dies
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One of the country's last surviving war heroes, Brigadier General
Zdenek Skarvada, has died at the age of 95. General Skarvada served in
the air force of the First Republic. After the occupation of
Czechoslovakia he left for Poland where he participated in the
country's defence before going on to Great Britain where he joined the
RAF. He flew night missions and when his plane suffered technical
failure he was captured by the Germans. He was held in several European
POW camps and eventually survived a 1000 km long death march. After the
communist coup he was demoted and forced to work in the mines. In 1965
he was partially rehabilitated. He has been awarded a number of
decorations for valour.


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Rescuers save young man trapped in marshland
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Rescuers in the Sumava Mountains saved the life of a 26-year-old man
who was abandoned, heavily drunk, in marshland by his friends. When he
failed to return to base on Saturday evening they alerted the mountain
rescue service which combed the famed Slatiny marshes. When they found
the man he was waist deep in mud, disoriented and suffering from
hypothermia. The head of the rescue team said he had had a lucky escape
since after several days of heavy rain the area was particularly
dangerous.


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Repairs on D1 highway underway
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Restrictions are in now place along selected stretches of the D1
highway from Prague to Brno. Following several days of persistent rain,
repair work started in earnest on Sunday with traffic restricted to one
lane in places. Despite the onset of repair work traffic is reported to
have problem-free throughout the day. The country's main highway will
remain open to traffic throughout its reconstruction due to concerns
that de-tours would immeasurably burden surrounding towns and villages.
The speed limit along the stretches where work is underway has been
lowered to 80 km per hour.


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Czechs defeated by Canada
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The Czech national team lost 2:1 to Canada at the World Ice Hockey
Championship in Stockholm on Sunday, seriously jeopardizing its chances
of advancing to the quarterfinals. The Czech team, which had been
struggling since the beginning of the tournament, put up a valiant
fight against their strong opponent with Petr Koukal equalizing an
opening goal by Canada's Wayne Simmonds in the first period. Although
the Czechs managed to maintain the score through the second period a
goal from Jeff Skinner close to the end of the third period dashed
their hopes of victory. The loss means that for the first time in the
country's modern history the Czechs might not advance to the
quarterfinals.


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Plekanec and Zidlicky to join national team
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Marek Zidlicky will join the Czech national team for the 2013 IIHF Ice
Hockey World Championship in Stockholm on Monday. After announcing the
arrival of Montreal Canadiens forward Tomas Plekanec on the same day,
the Czech national team will use their last spot on the roster for New
Jersey Devils defenceman Marek Zidlicky. Both Plekanec and Zidlicky are
to play in the last preliminary-round game against Norway on Tuesday.


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Weather
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The weather should remain fairly cold in the next day or two with
scattered showers and day time highs reaching 16 degrees. A warming is
expected in mid week with sunny skies and temperatures around 24
degrees Celsius.







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