Czech Newswire

June 2021

03.06.2021 Prime Minister Andrej Babis’s minority government survives confidence vote after Commies (KSCM) abstain; remaining opposition parties fall 12 votes short of 101 needed to topple government ( … Hokej: Czech Republic knocked out of IIHF World Championship after losing 1-0 to Finland in quarterfinals ( … 02.06.2021 Video: Cops rescue 71-year-old woman hanging upside-down from seventh-floor window in Prague 11 panelak; woman says she fell while trying to shoo pigeons from her window sill (

May 2021

31.05.2021 Czech allotment gardens are now so expensive that many northern Bohemian gardeners are renting allotments in nearby Zittau, Germany (iDNES) … Following colder-than-normal spring, temperatures could hit 27 degrees Celsius this weekend (5-6 June) as summery weather finally comes to the Czech Republic (iDNES) … 28.05.2021 Number of COVID-19 coronavirus vaccinations finally hits government’s 100,000-per-day target; 100,269 yesterday (Thursday) and 100,985 on Wednesday, according to Prime Minister Andrej Babis (iDNES) … 27.05.2021 Fotbal: Czech national team coach Jaroslav Silhavy picks young defensive player Michal Sadilek as final member of Euro 2020 squad following failure of Ondrej Kudela’s appeal against racist-abuse ban (@ceskarepre_eng on Twitter) … 25.05.2021 Update: TOP 09 politician Dominik Feri says he will quit parliament and won’t stand in October’s elections to avoid harming those around him – but says he’ll sue media outlets over “false and manipulative” sexual misconduct allegations (@choco_afro on Instagram) … Multiple women accuse high-profile TOP 09 politician Dominik Feri of inappropriate sexual behaviour, including pressuring them into non-consensual sex (A2larm) … Art group Ztohoven admits responsibility for creating Pac-Man-shaped crop circle in rapeseed field owned by Andrej Babis’s Agrofert group near Rip hill, Usti nad Labem Region (Seznam Zpravy) … Fotbal: Czech national team coach Jaroslav Silhavy names 25 members of his 26-man Euro 2020 squad; will wait to see if defender Ondrej Kudela’s appeal against racial-abuse ban is successful (@ceskarepre_eng on Twitter) … After less than seven weeks in the job, Petr Arenberger resigns as health minister following multiple reports of dodgy financial dealings; Adam Vojtech to return (iDNES) … 23.05.2021 Hokej: Former Czech national team defenceman Marek Troncinsky has died, aged 32, multiple sources tell Denik Sport; cause of death currently unknown ( … 21.05.2021 Organizers of Velka Pardubicka steeplechase refuse accreditation to award-winning CTK news agency photographer Roman Vondrous because they didn’t like photos he took last year (2020) of fall that killed horse ( … 20.05.2021 Czech entry Ben Cristovao (performing as Benny Cristo) fails to make final of Eurovision Song Contest with his song “omaga” (YouTube) … Suspicions grow that 0.75 tonnes of dangerous asbestos weren’t safely removed from former Michelske pekarny bakery complex on Pekarenska street, Prague 4-Michle, before demolition (Seznam Zpravy) … 18.05.2021 Events: Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds set to play next year’s (2022’s) Metronome Prague music festival (Facebook) … 16.05.2021 Tanker captained by 59-year-old Czech man crashes into bridge on Van Starkenborgh canal, Groningen, the Netherlands, causing “great damage”; local resident says he thought bomb had gone off (iDNES) … 15.05.2021 Snooty neighbour leaves note on British woman’s Skoda Fabia complaining that it makes the street “look like Beirut” and belongs in a dump (Mirror)14.05.2021 Health officials and local politicians baffled by growing number of new COVID-19 coronavirus cases in two small towns near Opava; Vitkov and Budisov nad Budisovkou have new case numbers three times higher than the surrounding Moravian-Silesian Region (iDNES) … 13.05.2021 Following painstaking two-year-long restoration, 1930s Slovenska strela (“Slovak Arrow”) express train travels from Prerov, Olomouc Region, to Tatra museum in Koprivnice, Moravian-Silesian Region, where it will go on permanent display (CT24) … 12.05.2021 47-year-old singer Bohus Matus marries 18-year-old Lucie Palkaninova at Krtkuv svet children’s amusement park in Prague 15-Horni Mecholupy; couple met when she was 15 and have five-month-old baby (iDNES) … 05.05.2021 Body found in Brno’s Svratka river yesterday afternoon is that of missing 15-year-old Tomas Pospisil, police confirm; investigators say death probably wasn’t caused by foul play (iDNES) … 01.05.2021 Bus company Data Autotrans launches direct service from Prague to Sumava national park destinations including Kasperske Hory, Kvilda, Modrava, Srni, and Prasily (Zdopravy)

April 2021

29.04.2021 Search continues for 15-year-old Tomas Pospisil, who has been missing since the night of 14/15 April; Tomas was last seen in Brno’s Komin and Jundrov districts; police have since found his coat, mobile and one of his trainers (Nova)  … Hokej: Kladno celebrate return to Czech ice hockey’s top-flight Extraliga after beating Jihlava 5-2 in Game 7 of best-of-seven playoff final series; 49-year-old player-owner Jaromir Jagr gets assist (iSport) … Re-opening of shops, originally proposed for next Monday (3 May), postponed for at least a week; current rate of 146 new Covid cases per week per 100,000 residents still significantly higher than 100 cases per week per 100,000 target (Blesk) … Media: A2larm journalist Apolena Rychlikova nominated for European Press Prize for opinion piece “Black Lives Matter, Czech-style? This country’s Roma get neither respect nor justice” (European Press Prize) … At least 11 people attended “party” on roof of Archbishop of Prague Cardinal Dominik Duka‘s Archbishop’s Palace in Prague 1-Hradcany on Tuesday evening (27 April), apparently ignoring government Covid guidelines; archbishopric spokesman refuses to confirm or deny whether event was attended by cardinal, who turned 78 on Monday (Blesk) … 28.04.2021 Cops seek 14-year-old Adam Brych, who is alleged to have stabbed two people last night (Tuesday 27 April) at a house on Ploskovicka street, Prague 8-Dolni Chabry; boy is described by police as armed but not dangerous, and might be injured himself (iDNES) … 27.04.2021 Fotbal: Former Sparta Praha midfielder Guelor Kanga accused of using fake identity; Democratic Republic of Congo football association officials claim 30-year-old Gabonese international is actually 35-year-old Congolese man called Kiaku-Kiaku Kianga (Sport) … 22.04.2021 Body in thousand-year-old grave found during installation of swimming pool in garden of Kralice na Hane, Olomouc Region home is that of teenager, say archaeologists; grave might be part of larger Prostejov-area burial ground (iDNES) … Czech army (ACR) apologizes for frightening Prachatice-area residents after several Gripen fighter jets flew low over South Bohemia last night (Wednesday 21 April) as part of unannounced training exercise (Nova) … 20.04.2021 Czech beer consumption in 2020 was at its lowest level since the 1960s, according to brewing industry association the Cesky svaz pivovaru a sladoven; because of pub and restaurant closures, Czechs drank only 135 litres of beer per person last year, down seven litres per person on 2019 (iDNES) … 19.04.2021 Lentilky production ends at the Sfinx factory in Holesov, Olomouc Region, after more than a hundred years; owners Nestle plan to move production of the much-loved Czech sweet to Hamburg, Germany, where it will share a “new recipe” with Smarties (Denik) … 17.04.2021 Prime Minister Andrej Babis accuses Russian intelligence of involvement in 2014 explosions at munitions depot in Vrbetice, Zlin Region, that killed two people; 18 Russian diplomats to be expelled (Blesk) … 15.04.2021 Cops investigating theft of entire chata from allotment garden in Starovicky, South Moravia; missing building was 3.5 metres long, 3 metres wide and 2 metres high (Nova) … 14.04.2021 Fotbal: European governing body UEFA bans Slavia Praha defender Ondrej Kudela for 10 games for racially abusing Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara; ban means Kudela won’t be available for Czech national team at this summer’s Euro 2020 finals (UEFA) … The Czech motorway network’s only “road church”, the Kaple Smireni (“Chapel of Reconciliation”), gets its own road-sign icon; the chapel is part of the Slovice motorway service area, in the Plzen Region, on the Prague-bound carriageway of the D5 (Zdopravy) … Cops shelve investigation of murder of Nina H. (24), whose body was found in Obora Hvezda park, Prague 6, last November (2020), because only suspect – her friend Jan (34) – killed himself shortly afterwards; police believe motive was “unrequited love” (Nova) … 13.04.2021 Deputy Prime Minister/Interior Minister Jan Hamacek (CSSD) recovering at home after “collapsing”; Social Democrat leader blames “pressure”; Hamacek recently sacked Foreign Minister Tomas Petricek following party leadership challenge (Blesk) … 09.04.2021 asks readers for help tracing 11 Jewish children who were saved from transportation to the Terezin/Theresienstadt concentration camp during World War II by the Czechoslovak resistance group “Lvice” and given new identities in the Ostrava area (Denik) … 08.04.2021 Gold wings return to top of Prague’s Hlavni nadrazi train station following year-long restoration; as part of the repairs, the 1907 sculpture has been gilded with 4,875 pieces of 24-karat gold leaf (Nova) … Cops investigating death of 46-year-old man at chata in Ostopovice, Brno-venkov, South Moravia, discover arsenal of “26 kilos of small-calibre ammunition, almost 800 artillery shells, 80 hand grenades and 9 aerial bombs”; police think death was health-related (Nova) … 02.04.2021 Truck carrying 10,000 litres of slurry crashes in Podecely, Pardubice Region, flooding village with faeces from pig farm (Nova)  … 01.04.2021 15-year-old boy released from Prague’s Fakultni Thomayerova nemocnice hospital, 70 days after falling from 19th floor of Prague 11-Haje panelak; following near-miraculous recovery from life-threatening injuries, teenager is suffering “no serious consequences” of 60-metre drop (Blesk)

March 2021 

31.03.2021 High-profile Czech music festival Colours of Ostrava postponed again because of COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic; event now set to be held 13-16 July 2022 (iDNES) … 29.03.2021 BREAKING: Czech billionaire Petr Kellner killed, aged 56, in helicopter crash in Alaska (Washington Post) … 28.03.2021 Cops attempting to verify sighting of bear, south-east of Prague, between Mnichovice, Strancice and Vsestary, Praha-Vychod, Central Bohemia (Nova)  … 27.03.2021 Czech census website runs into technical problems only hours after launch and, as of 8:45am on Saturday, isn’t working (iDNES) … 26.03.2021 Video: Cops hunt runaway emu that startled drivers on roads north of Ceska Lipa, Liberec Region (Nova) [corrected] … 25.03.2021 KSCM (Commies) set to back 14-day extension of State of Emergency, potentially paving way for Prime Minister Andrej Babis’s minority government to extend hard lockdown beyond Easter; government originally wanted 30-day extension (Nova) … 24.03.2021 Prime Minister Andrej Babis’s minority government again struggling to get the votes it needs in Czech parliament’s lower house to extend the State of Emergency beyond Sunday; SPOLU coalition (ODS/KDU-CSL/TOP 09), Pirates and STAN all oppose Babis’s extension plan (iDNES) … 23.03.2021 “Queen of Czechoslovak Chanson” Hana Hegerova dies, aged 89, in Prague’s Na Homolce hospital; Slovak-born singer had suffered a series of health issues and, according to her publisher, had broken her hip a month ago (iDNES) [corrected] … Vaclav Klaus Jr., leader of new right-wing populist party Trikolora, to quit politics and leave public life, saying he has lacked “positive energy” since his divorce from second wife Lucie Hrebackova in 2017 (Facebook via Nova) … 19.03.2021 German-language Czech newspaper Prager Zeitung helps Snopes debunk fake Joe Biden story (Snopes)  … Fotbal: Rangers-Slavia Praha Europa League game ends in chaos following accusation that Slavia defender Ondrej Kudela racially abused Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara and counter-accusation that Kamara punched Kudela after the game (Scottish Sun) … 18.03.2021 Transport experts map the Czech Republic’s worst road accident hotspots; the top five are all in Prague, three of those on Kbelska street, Prague 9 – part of the Prumyslovy polookruh (“Industrial Semicircle”) highway (iDNES) … 17.03.2021 Controversial Prague-Reporyje Mayor Pavel Novotny to leave Civic Democrats (ODS) after October elections; provocative tabloid journalist-turned-politician frustrated by lack of opportunities on national stage in traditional centre-right party (iDNES) … 14.03.2021 Zoo in Brno and safari park in Dvur Kralove nad Labem, Hradec Kralove Region, arrange video link-up for their chimpanzees (Nova) … 11.03.2021 Video: Big crane rescues slightly smaller crane from ditch following accident near Napajedla, Zlin Region (Nova)  … Fire breaks out in wooden World War II-era hangar at Tocna airfield, Prague 12-Tocna; priceless collection of historical planes, including Jan Antonin Bata’s Lockheed Electra 10A, saved by firefighters (Blesk)  … 08.03.2021 “Adrenaline level: Brno“; unknown man walks on second-city rooftop carrying white plastic bag (Blesk) … 05.03.2021 Loony far-right member of parliament Lubomir Volny (independent; formerly SPD) speculates on Facebook that DHL aeroplane might have been spreading COVID-19 coronavirus over Brno; plane was actually circling because of fog (iDNES) … 04.03.2021 Czech competitive eater Jaroslav “Maxijedlik” Nemec fails in attempt to eat 30,000 dried mealworms in 30 minutes in Brno but still sets unofficial world record: 9,158 larvas, weighing roughly 250 grams (Blesk) … 03.03.2021 Billionaire politician Pavel Sehnal (ODA) jumps queue to get COVID-19 coronavirus vaccination by posing as health worker; the 56-year-old property tycoon owns a private dental clinic at Na Bulovce hospital, Prague 8-Liben (Seznam Zpravy) … 01.03.2021 Cops reassure residents of Spojil, a 1.7-square-kilometre “obec” (“municipality”) entirely surrounded by the city of Pardubice, that they’ll be able to visit Pardubice during lockdown (Twitter) … Prima televize presenter and former biathlon star Gabriela Koukalova announces she is pregnant with new boyfriend Milos Kaderabek’s child and will go back to using her maiden name, Gabriela Soukalova (Blesk)

February 2021

25.02.2021 Richard the gorilla and Asiatic lions Jamvan and Suchi test positive for COVID-19 coronavirus at Prague zoo; all currently have only mild symptoms (iDNES) … 23.02.2021 Former President Vaclav Klaus has COVID-19 coronavirus; 79-year-old lockdown sceptic is recovering at home after repeatedly ignoring government restrictions (Blesk)20.02.2021 Vystaviste Praha Holesovice’s Matejska pout funfair cancelled this year (2021) because of COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic; Prague 7-Holesovice fairgrounds may host smaller-scale “Zabavne mestecko” (“Fun Town”) fair later in year (Denik)18.02.2021 Panic-buying brings down Dr. Max pharmacy chain website after Health Minister Jan Blatny announces plan to make FFP2 respirators, nano masks or doubled-up surgical masks mandatory on public transport and in shops (Nova) … Prime Minister Andrej Babis sacks COVID-19 coronavirus advisor Roman Prymula for (legally) attending Slavia Praha-Leicester City Europa League football match, hours after calling for tougher lockdown (Blesk) … Aw: Three little baby brown roofed turtles born at Zoo Praha; currently closed Prague 7-Troja attraction was first zoo in world to successfully breed brown roofed turtles, in 2008 (Blesk) … 10.02.2021 Culture Minister Lubomir Zaoralek (CSSD) cuts his own hair; describes new look as “plucked tennis ball” (Blesk) 08.02.2021 Snow: Lorry accident near Trhovy Stepanov, Central Bohemia, blocks Prague-bound traffic on D1 motorway (Blesk) … 05.02.2021 Shopping: Marks & Spencer launching Czech click-and-collect service, allowing Prague customers to order clothes online and pick them up from Wenceslas Square, Chodov and Cerny Most stores (Marks & Spencer Clickaway) … 04.02.2021 “Beast from the East” weather conditions set to bring extreme cold to Czech Republic next week (8-14 February); daytime highs could be as low as -12 degrees Celsius in some areas (Nova) … 02.02.2021 30-year-old Lysa nad Labem, Central Bohemia, man helicoptered to hospital in Prague after deciding to test new bulletproof vest by shooting himself; vest turns out to be ineffective (Novinky) … 01.02.2021 Video: TV news reporter Petr Brzek and his cameraman assaulted by operator and customers of illegally opened Cenkovice, Pardubice Region, ski resort (Nova)