News in brief for Aug. 6: Top headlines for Czechia on Sunday

The top stories for Sunday, Aug. 6, 2023, updated frequently to keep you up to speed. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 06.08.2023 08:30:00 (updated on 22.08.2023) Reading time: 5 minutes

Weather Czech Republic on flood alert after CHMI warning

The Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (CHMI) has issued flood warnings for various regions this afternoon. A low-degree flood warning has been issued for rivers and streams in Beskydy, Jeseníky, Krkonoše, and parts of the Bohemian-Moravian Highlands. The warning is effective until Monday evening.

The CHMI has also expanded the area at risk of heavy rainfall, especially in northeastern mountains and parts of Bohemian-Moravian Highlands. Persistent rain has elevated river levels in these areas, with the Elbe, Metuje, and Divoká Orlice rivers already at first stage of flood danger. Similar scenarios are expected in other locations.

International Czechs among those evacuated during Slovenia flooding

Torrential rains have triggered a significant disaster in Slovenia as a dam on the Mura River burst, leading to the evacuation of multiple villages. The breached dam resulted in widespread flooding, forcing around 500 residents from the village of Dolnja Bistrica to abandon their homes.

Slovenian Prime Minister Robert Golob described this event as the most extensive natural catastrophe in the country's history. As the situation unfolds, authorities reported four casualties, including two Dutch citizens. With ongoing monitoring, officials are actively addressing the crisis and working to manage the aftermath of the disaster caused by the torrential rains and dam breach.

Legal Former president Klaus escapes fine for going maskless

Former Czech President Václav Klaus has escaped a fine for speaking without a mask during the pandemic. The Supreme Administrative Court rejected the Ministry of Health's appeal, confirming the Prague Municipal Court's decision. In 2020, Klaus was fined for addressing a crowd without a mask.

The Ministry of Health's complaint was dismissed by the court, and they must reimburse Klaus around 4,100 crowns. The court's ruling is final, annulling the eight-thousand-crown fine Klaus had faced for violating mask-wearing regulations. Klaus is known for his critical stance on Covid-19 measures, and his unmasked speech sparked controversy.

Weather Heavy rainfall continues on Sunday throughout Czechia

Intense rainfall struck most areas of the Czech Republic overnight, primarily affecting southern Bohemia and southern Moravia. Meteorologists have revised their warnings, anticipating significant rainfall on Sunday in regions including the Jeseníky, Krkonoše, Beskydy, and Vysočina mountain ranges.

The Czech Hydrometeorological Institute advises residents and visitors to stay alert to weather updates and potential hazards like flooding and landslides. Tourist destinations, such as historic South Bohemia and vineyard-dotted South Moravia, have also experienced the impact of the heavy downpour.

sports Prague Open semifinals rained out on Saturday

Following rained-out matches on Saturday, the Prague Open hopes to wrap up today should weather permit. Semifinal matches featuring Linda Nosková against Tamara Korpatsch of Germany and Romania's Jaqueline Cristian against Japan's Nao Hibino are now set to begin simultaneously at 10:30 a.m. on two courts, with the final expected to follow.

In case of further rain today, organizers have contingency plans to move the schedule to Monday. Eighteen-year-old Nosková, having reached the Prague Open semifinals in two straight years, seeks a spot in the final after falling short to compatriot Marie Bouzková last year.

Economy Czech inflation continues to slow down in July

Inflation in the Czech Republic continued its decline in July, dropping below nine percent, according to analysts contacted by Czech News Agency. The Czech Statistical Office will issue official data on July inflation later this week. June's inflation rate of 9.7 percent was the country's lowest since December, 2021.

"In June, year-on-year inflation fell below ten percent for the first time since January 2022, and we expect a further decrease in it for July," said analysts from Česká spořitelna. "The most significant of factors [leading to inflation slowing down] is subdued household consumption."

Culture Longest Czech-German picnic table set up in Domažlice

A total of 383 individuals from both sides of the Czech-German border convened at a sprawling hundred-meter-long picnic table in Domažlice on Saturday afternoon. The event, organized by the Ackermann-Gemeinde association, aimed to bring Czechs and Germans together and promote reconciliation.

Marie Neudörfl, the executive of Ackermann-Gemeinde, expressed surprise at the turnout, with attendees hailing from various regions, even hundreds of kilometers away. Mayor Stanislav Antoš and Minister for European Affairs Martin Dvořák noted the strengthening Czech-German relations, observed against the backdrop of regional specialties and cultural celebrations.

Safety Czech President urges motorcycle riders to wear helmets

During an event supporting injured motorcyclists in Kladruby, Czech President Petr Pavel called on motorcyclists to prioritize safety by wearing helmets, even during short rides. Pavel mentioned his willingness to donate money to aid motorcyclists who suffered injuries due to accidents caused by others.

The president had previously come under scrutiny when he was spotted riding a motorcycle without a helmet in Rtyně. He later apologized, explaining that he was only refilling the tires at a gas station. Though Pavel has immunity from being fined as president, he vowed to contribute an amount exceeding the maximum fine for the offense to assist injured bikers.

Culture Classic vehicles from before 1945 go on parade in Kroměříž

Kroměříž celebrated the 11th edition of the vintage automobile gathering Veterans Not Only from Kroměříž festival this weekend. Over sixty classic vehicles, including cars and motorcycles from before 1945, paraded through the city streets. The event featured a city drive, a public exhibition in Velký náměstí, and a scenic hundred-kilometer journey.

A diverse lineup of vehicles, including Škoda, Tatra, Aero, BMW, Lincoln, and Lagonda models, participated in the event. The oldest vehicles were a 1912 Ford T Touring car and a 1926 BMW R42 motorcycle. This year's multi-day event aimed to attract vintage car enthusiasts from Slovakia and beyond.

Tech Number of cyber attacks in Czechia down in July

The National Cyber and Information Security Office (NUKIB) of Czechia has reported a decrease in cyber incidents for July, with 13 registered cases, following two above-average months. None of the incidents were categorized as "very significant." Most of the recorded incidents disrupted service availability, but unlike usual Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, they were caused by system failures or misconfigurations.

The pro-Russian hacktivist group NoName057 was responsible for DDoS attacks targeting Czech targets. The NUKIB classified 11 incidents as "minor" and two as "major." This pattern of fluctuating incident numbers has been observed throughout the year.

Crime Aš man detonates homemade explosive in police car

A man who detonated a homemade explosive in a parked police car in Aš on August 3 could face up to eight years in prison, according to regional police spokesman Jakub Kopřiva. The 40-year-old suspect has been taken into custody and charged with public endangerment and violence against a public authority.

The incident occurred in front of the local district police station, where the man placed an explosive device under the hood of the parked police car, ignited it, and fled. The explosion caused damage to the vehicle's hood, engine part, windshield, and dashboard. Firefighters arrived promptly and prevented the vehicle from catching fire. The man's knowledge of pyrotechnics suggested he was aware of the potential risk to nearby residents.

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