Czech morning news roundup: Thursday, November 18, 2021

Zeman expects to leave hospital soon, unvaccinated to be turned away from Christmas markets, national holiday celebrations see anti-lockdown protests.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 18.11.2021 09:28 (updated on 18.11.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

Zeman President expects to leave hospital in a few days

Czech President Miloš Zeman expects to be discharged from Prague’s Central Military Hospital (ÚVN) in a few days, and anticipates moving to the Lány presidential manor near Prague. Once he leaves hospital, Zeman expects to receive ministerial candidates for the planned new cabinet submitted to the President by coalition leader Petr Fiala (ODS).

In pre-recorded interview which aired yesterday evening, the President appeared relaxed and refreshed, repeatedly praising the care provided to him by hospital staff. His spokesperson confirmed that his discharging from hospital should take place soon, and Zeman said he is eager to resume work as soon as possible.

Covid restrictions Unvaccinated to be turned away from Christmas markets

The Czech Republic’s Chief Hygienist Pavla Svrčinová has stated that only people who have been fully vaccinated, have a certificate proving they have undergone Covid infection in the last six months, or have one dose of vaccination and a negative test result will be allowed to attend the country’s Christmas markets. Others who do not meet these criteria will not be able to visit the markets.

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Svrčinová said that Christmas concerts taking place outside will also be subject to the requirement of vaccination or proof of previous infection. Organizers of such events should check the vaccination status of attendees, while police and hygiene officials should also be on location to carry out spot checks, handing out fines to those attending without meeting the required criteria.

Velvet Revolution Celebrations marked by protests against Covid restrictions

Events to commemorate the Velvet Revolution leading to the overthrow of Communism in the Czech Republic were interrupted by protests against the Czech Republic’s Covid-19 restrictions yesterday. A similar situation unfolded in the Slovak capital Bratislava, where two police officers were injured after firecrackers were detonated by the crowd.

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The protests came as the government announced new Covid restrictions against unvaccinated citizens, barring those without evidence of vaccination or previous infection from entering public events and services. In Prague, anti-lockdown protestors passed through events commemorating the Revolution in Národní třida after demonstrating in Prague’s Old Town Square.

Human rights Human chain in Prague formed to back dissidents in Russia, Belarus

Some 350 people joined a human chain in the center of Prague yesterday, intended to highlight the plight of political prisoners in Russia and Belarus and the crackdown on opposition in the two countries.

The participants held up pieces of paper bearing names and photos of political prisoners, and signed a letter in support of the prisoners addressed to top EU representatives and MEPs, calling for more targeted sanctions against the oppressive regimes. The event was organized by the We Will Manage It Together initiative, and the We Stand By Belarus group. The group criticized the fact that leaders in Russia and Belarus continue to use relations with Europe’s democracies to enrich themselves. It is thought there are currently around 800 political prisoners in captivity in Belarus.

Health Czechs are focusing more on their health after lockdown

Czechs are running more and further following the end of lockdown restrictions, according to a survey by Generali Investments. The study found that over 30% of people in the country now go jogging at least once a month. 20% of Czechs have started running more since the end of Covid restrictions on movement, with a third citing a need to clear their heads and a fifth getting used to running as a means of getting some fresh air and exercise during lockdown.

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At the same time, many people for whom running has becoming important care less about weight loss and their figure, and more about their overall physical and mental health. The previous year, results showed that weight loss was the main motivation for running; but this year, only 19% of Czechs stated a slimmer figure as their motivation.

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