Czech morning news in brief: top headlines for April 15, 2021

Border checks with Germany ended at midnight, Czech troops ready to withdraw from Afghanistan, and Slavia Prague's Kúdela sidelined for 10 games.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 15.04.2021 09:10:00 (updated on 15.04.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

Border checks with Germany end, but testing still necessary

Germany ended permanent inspections at the border with the Czech Republic at midnight but arrivals from the Czech lands are still subject to random inspections. Certain measures, including regular testing, will also remain in force. The current rules still apply: people traveling from the Czech Republic to Germany must have a negative test that is no more than 48 hours old, register with the German authorities online, and adhere to a ten-day quarantine. Exceptions are freight drivers and people who are driving through Germany. Commuters will also continue to be regularly tested and must fill in a weekly entry form.

Czech troops ready to withdraw from Afghanistan

The Czech Republic said it respects NATO’s decision to leave Afghanistan and is ready to withdraw troops from the Afghan mission, Defence Minister Lubomír Metnar said after Wednesday's video conference talk with allies. U.S. President Joe Biden said Wednesday that the U.S. and its allies would launch their gradual departure from Afghanistan on May 1 and definitively leave the country by September 11, the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, due to which the invasion was initially launched. The Czech military can have up to 205 troops in Afghanistan under the approved mandate. Several thousands of Czechs have served there since 2002, mostly as staff of a field hospital, in patrolling units, as experts for chemical and biological warfare, and members of the surgery and reconstruction team, Logar. The mission has claimed the lives of fourteen Czech soldiers.

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The new Slovak Prime Minister will visit the Czech Republic today

New Slovak Prime Minister Eduard Heger will visit the Czech Republic on Thursday. The visit to the country's former federal partner, Heger's first foreign trip in the new position, is customary for leading politicians of both countries. Heger will first meet with President Miloš Zeman at Lány, followed by an afternoon meeting with Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, Senate President Miloš Vystrčil, and House Speaker Radek Vondráček. According to Rudolf Jindrák, the meeting with the president will be dominated by talks on the coronavirus crisis. Politicians will also discuss bilateral relations, including economic cooperation after the end of the pandemic, and regional cooperation, including the format of the Visegrad Four, comprised of Poland and Hungary in addition to the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Slavia Prague defender Kúdela must sit out 10 games

Slavia Prague player Ondřej Kúdela was banned for 10 games by the UEFA Disciplinary Commission on Wednesday for racially abusing Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara at a March 18 Europea League final match in Glasgow. UEFA said its ban would apply to “club and representative team competition matches,” including the rest of Slavia’s Europa League campaign and the Czech Republic’s games at the European Championship. Kúdela still denies the allegations of racism and is considering an appeal with the lawyer. Slavia, however, will not appeal. The UEFA also banned Kamara for three European club competition games next season for assaulting Kúdela after the game.

CzechTourism earmarks funds for re-start campaign

CzechTourism says tourism would benefit from a clear plan for dismantling the current travel restrictions, making accommodation services or monuments accessible in a way that attendance isn't concentrated all in the primary season. The agency has prepared support activities for tourism, which will be launched as soon as the existing measures expire, the state agency said at a press conference this week. The agency's restart campaign will be aimed at attracting travelers from the surrounding countries, as well as the Netherlands, Hungary and Ukraine. It said it will focus on attracting visitors to castles and chateaux, towns, spas, as well as gastronomy venues. CzechTourism has earmarked CZK 100 million for foreign campaigns and marketing activities.

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