Czech news in brief for April 3: Wednesday's top headlines

Police pursue farmers who dumped manure in Prague, rape victim files complaint against Czech court, and thirty groups apply for EP elections in Czechia. Staff ČTK

Written by StaffČTK Published on 03.04.2024 09:07:00 (updated on 03.04.2024) Reading time: 3 minutes

POLITICS Trust in Czech govt still very low

According to a recent poll by the Czech Center for Public Opinion Research, only one-fifth of Czech citizens have confidence in the government and Chamber of Deputies. However, trust in President Petr Pavel and the Senate has increased since the last poll in October and November. The pollsters noted that trust in these institutions has remained consistently low compared to a year ago. Only 20 percent of the public have confidence in the center-right government of Prime Minister Petr Fiala and the Chamber of Deputies.

public figure Zeman discharged from hospital

Former Czech President Miloš Zeman, 79, was discharged today from Motol University Hospital and will receive home care after being hospitalized for a blood clot removal surgery in March. He was in hospital for almost three weeks. Hospital director Miloslav Ludvík stated that while Zeman is still considered a fragile patient, his condition is improving and his lab results are favorable. Head doctor Pavel Kolář stated that Zeman will not attend the Slovakian presidential election as originally planned due to his health.

ANIMALS Beavers return to Czech mountains after centuries

According to Krokonoše National Park spokesman Radek Drahný, beavers have returned to the Czech part of the Krokonoše after centuries. Two specimens were recently spotted in the foothills, one killed by a car and the other captured on camera. This suggests that beavers will continue to expand into the Krokonoše from the Jizera River and its tributaries. However, the mountainous landscape may not be ideal for them due to fast-flowing rivers and unsuitable vegetation on the banks, experts say.

POLITICS Pavel: Czechia must be more resilient

President Petr Pavel emphasized today the need for the Czech Republic to focus on strengthening its society's resilience and defense capabilities in the face of current international security threats. At a conference organized by Czech Technical University, he warned that delays in military equipment purchases could hinder the country's ability to respond quickly. He also urged politicians to acknowledge and address these threats rather than dismissing them as warmongering. The president stressed the importance of utilizing all available resources and implementing them efficiently to increase defense and resilience.

Tragedy No Czech citizens impacted by Taiwan earthquake

Czech diplomacy has so far had no report by Czechs impacted by Taiwan’s earthquake. The Drozd system registers 88 Czech citizens. A powerful earthquake struck off Taiwan's east coast, causing widespread damage. At least four deaths and over 50 injuries were reported. Japan lifted tsunami warnings, while the Philippines issued alerts.

Justice Rape victim files complaint against Czech court

A victim of repeated rape by her stepfather, who received a suspended sentence, filed a complaint with the Czech Constitutional Court. She asserts rights to effective investigation, protection of human dignity, and participation in proceedings. The ruling, criticized widely, involved a man convicted of rape and child pornography production. Despite the girl’s psychological trauma, the court considered mitigating factors. The case sparked protests, with the victim’s representative planning a constitutional complaint citing European Court decisions.

Crime Police pursue farmers who dumped manure in Prague

Prague police have recommended investigations into the conduct of three individuals during the farmers’ protest on March 7. The cases have been referred to the Prague 1 District Town Hall and City Hall for further consideration. One individual, arrested for depositing manure on streets and tram tracks near the government’s headquarters, could face fines of up to CZK 300,000.

Another protester, detained while attempting to breach roadblocks, may be subject to penalties of up to CZK 10,000 for disturbing public peace. Authorities also reported a third person, who was not apprehended during the demonstration.

EU elections Thirty groups applied for EP elections

Thirty entities have submitted candidacies to the Czech Interior Ministry for the upcoming European Parliament elections in June, the ministry reported. This number is lower than the previous EP elections, with ten fewer groups participating. However, the number of coalitions has increased by nearly 50 percent. The ministry will review submissions and determine eligible candidates by April 20. All nine parliamentary parties are among those vying for seats, with various coalitions formed.

Economy Brussels releases large subsidy to Czechia

The European Commission disbursed EUR 702 million (CZK 17.7 billion) in subsidies to the Czech Republic as part of an economic recovery fund. This second installment payment aims to alleviate the impact of the financial crisis. The Czech Republic met the criteria outlined in its National Recovery Plan, which focuses on digital and ecological transformations, education, research, public administration, and health. The plan aims to mitigate Covid-19 effects and boost economic prosperity through 2027.

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