Czech morning news in brief: Top headlines for September 16, 2021

MPs ban fireworks at sports events, two firefighters die in explosion in Kroměříž, Václav Havel exhibition begins in Prague, and autumn is coming. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 16.09.2021 09:59:00 (updated on 16.09.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

Two firefighters die in explosion in Kroměříž

Two firefighters died in an explosion at a house in Koryčany near Kroměříž on 15 September. Another two suffered severe injuries and two civilians were also taken to hospital. The deaths and injuries were announced by Zlín Regional Governor Radim Holiš and Fire Service director Vladimír Vlček.

Six local volunteer firefighters arrived at the family home after a gas leak alert. An explosion occurred only two minutes after they arrived on the scene. The house was completely destroyed in the blast and the surrounding area has been cordoned off by police as necessary checks are carried out to ensure that nobody else is trapped in the rubble.

Czech and Saudi foreign ministers discuss tourism, terrorism, investment

Czech Foreign Minister Jakub Kulhánek travelled to the Czech Embassy in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Wednesday, where he met Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan. The ministers discussed relations and cooperation between the two countries and discussed ways of promoting, supporting and developing bilateral cooperation.

Cooperation was discussed in relation to Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 program as well as environmental initiatives announced by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Kulhánek also met Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affair Adel Al-Jubeir to discuss regional and international issues of common interest. 

Hospitalized ex-President Klaus may be home by the weekend

Former Czech President Václav Klaus may be released from Prague’s Central Military Hospital (ÚVN) at the end of this week to spend the weekend at home, his spokesman has said. Klaus, who is 80 years old, was hospitalized at the weekend over problems with high blood pressure and was re-admitted on Tuesday.

Current President Miloš Zeman is currently hospitalized at the same facility, for reasons as yet unknown. Klaus, who was Czech President from 2003 to 2013, has not suffered from serious health troubles in the past. In February 2021, he contracted Covid-19 after repeatedly criticizing lockdown restrictions.

MPs ban fireworks at sports events

Fines of up to CZK 100,000 will be handed out to people using fireworks during sports events and such individuals could even face a ban on entering stadiums under an amendment to misdemeanor laws passed by the Chamber of Deputies. The Senate, the upper house of the Czech parliament, will now debate the bill. The amendment also introduces rules for the considerate questioning of minors and reforms to the way in which misdemeanors involving children are handled.

Under the amendment, fines from CZK 10,000 to CZK 50,000, and up to CZK 100,000 for repeat offenders may be imposed for letting off fireworks at sports events. The Interior Ministry has also proposed that this new kid of misdemeanor be entered into the criminal register to allow checking of repeat offenders.


Václav Havel exhibition begins in Wallenstein Garden

An exhibition entitled Václav Havel: The Power of the Powerless is starting in Prague’s Wallenstein Garden today. The exhibition, named after one of the former President’s most famous political essays, takes place on the occasion of Havel’s 85th birthday, and the tenth anniversary of his death.

The exhibition will be opened by the President of the Senate Miloš Vystrčil, the Executive Director of the Václav Havel Library Michael Žantovský and the Mayor of Prague 6 Ondřej Kolář. Visitors can also enjoy extended Wallenstein Garden opening hours, until 7:30 p.m. The exhibition, featuring pieces of text accompanied by photographs based on Havel’s ideas, will run until October 24. 

Autumn is coming, say meteorologists

Wednesday night was unusually warm in the Czech Republic, with a high temperature of 19.4 degrees measured in Pardubice. Meteorologists warn, however, that a similarly warm night will not be seen for the rest of this year. Temperatures will gradually cool, and next week afternoons will be up to ten degrees colder than they have been this week.

The change is expected as the country’s weather shifts definitively into autumn mode. This shift will see the arrival of greater levels of rain, mostly overcast skies, and morning temperatures potentially as low as 3 degrees Celsius.

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