Czech morning news roundup: Monday, November 29, 2021

"Open Czechia" protest takes place in Prague, Polish government confirms "abortion tourism" letter of complaint, Czech Republic exits tennis Davis Cup.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 29.11.2021 09:28:00 (updated on 29.11.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

Lead story “Open Czechia” protest held in Prague on Sunday

Despite bad weather on Sunday, thousands of demonstrators gathered in Prague’s Letná park to protest against re-imposed lockdown measures and attempts to encourage greater levels of Covid vaccination in the Czech Republic. The protest was organized by the Open Czechia movement in cooperation with other groups. Police estimate that around 2,500 to 3,000 people went to the event, which was supervised by dozens of police officers.

The event featured stands set up by various anti-lockdown and anti-vaccine groups, while there was also a beer stall on-site which attracted a lengthy line. Speakers included paramedics, lawyers, and representatives of political movements arguing the Covid crisis has become a vehicle for totalitarian government measures. No participants were wearing face masks or respirators. Toward the end of the protest, around 4 pm, police called on protesters to observe distancing and mask-wearing measures to no avail.

Abortion Polish government hits back against so-called “abortion tourism”

The Polish government has confirmed that it hit back against growing phenomenon of what it calls “abortion tourism” from Poland to the Czech Republic by issuing a scathing letter to the then-Czech Health Minister Jan Blatný earlier this year. The letter called on Blatný to block legislation discussed in Parliament clarifying the rules of foreigners to receive an abortion, following a Polish crackdown which has made abortions illegal in nearly all cases.

The letter criticized the open justification of the legislative proposals as an attempt to “circumvent Polish legislation protecting unborn human life,” and “encouraging Polish citizens to break Polish law.” Blatný is believed to have responded to the letter by claiming that providing abortion for Polish women on Czech territory is in line with both domestic and EU law.

sport Czech Republic loses out to Great Britain in Davis Cup

The Czech Republic was knocked out of the Davis Cup tennis teams tournament after losing to Great Britain in the final group stage round, sending the British to the quarter finals and the Czechs back home.

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Britain won the tie 2-1. After Tomáš Macháč beat Dan Evans 6-2, 7-5, the Brits launched a comeback as Cameron Norrie beat 20-year-old Jiří Lehečka 6-1, 2-6, 6-1, leading to a tie-breaking doubles match which was easily one by the British pair. On Tuesday afternoon Britain will face Germany, who have so far overcome Austria and Novak Djokovic’s Serbia.

Holiday season Czech Post presents this year’s Christmas stamp

Czech Post has presented its special Christmas Stamp for 2021. Collectors can get hold of the stamp by sending a letter to the post office in Boží Dar, which has stamped hundreds of thousands of letters and postcards each and every Christmas since 1994.

The 2021 stamp features circles, stars and an inscription reading “God’s Gift.” The pattern was designed by Věra Marešová. The special stamping service in Boží Dar will operate throughout the Advent period, from December 1 to 23. Just address your letter to Vánoční pošta, Boží Dar 1, 36262 to get your Christmas stamp. 

Czech history Archaeologists uncover Mendel’s greenhouse foundations

Archaeologists in Brno have uncovered the complete foundations of the greenhouse in which the founding father of genetics, Gregor Johann Mendel, conducted his plant-crossing experiments. The site is located in the monastery park in Brno’s old town. Researchers described the foundations as “a breath-taking view of the internal appearance of the greenhouse at floor level.”

The greenhouse was destroyed by storms in the second half of the nineteenth century and only its foundations survived, covered with rubble, earth and gravel ever since. Now, a new greenhouse is planned for construction based around the foundations of the old one, to house a permanent exhibition dedicated to Mendel’s legacy while serving as an events space.

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