The Daily Dozen: 12 things to know about Czechia today

News, tips, and top stories for Prague and the Czech Republic on Oct. 27, 2022. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 27.10.2022 15:46:00 (updated on 28.10.2022) Reading time: 4 minutes

1 Czech parliament approves 2023 state budget bill

The Czech Republic's planned deficit for next year stands at CZK 295 billion, Reuters reports. This represents 4 percent of the GDP, and is based on estimates from the Ministry of Finance. An August report by the Czech Republic Supreme Audit Office said that the Czech Republic's debt reached 41.9 percent of the GDP last year, and experienced a year-on-year increase of 4.2 percentage points, which was the fastest in the EU last year; the debt was less than a half of the EU's average in 2021.

2 Czech volunteer paints harrowing picture of fighting in Ukraine

A Czech commander going by the moniker Tango spoke with Seznam Zprávy about his experience fighting in eastern Ukraine as part of reconnaissance unit Ronin Recon, made up of a dozen foreign volunteers. "Dead bodies from shelling could be smelled everywhere, but we also came across freshly dug shallow graves," he said, adding that "it was horrible."

3 Jurečka to serve as acting Minister of Environment

Prime Minister Petr Fiala announced today after a meeting with President Miloš Zeman that Deputy Prime Minister Marian Jurečka has been entrusted with the post of acting environment minister, ČTK reports. Jurečka will hold the position until issues with the Christian Democrat party's nominee for the post, Petr Hladík, are solved. Hladík, which served until recently as deputy mayor of Brno, is currently under investigation for his alleged connections to a dubious housing privatization in Brno.

4 Zeman to continue using feeding tube

President Miloš Zeman's health condition has improved, but he will continue to use a feeding tube in his stomach until Christmas, iDnes reports. Tomáš Zima, head of Zeman's medical council and former rector of Charles University, told MF TODAY that Zeman "is trying to eat on his own, but there is still a possibility that the caloric intake could be reduced after the tube is removed." The president has a feeding tube installed in his stomach after a hospitalization last year due to the risk of malnutrition.

5 Prague councilors earmark funds for environmental protection in 2023

A program supporting the environment in the Czech capital will have a budget of CZK 44 million next year, according to a press release. The applications are open both to organizations and individuals, who can "apply for funds for projects in a total of seven categories, which relate, for example, to climate change, support for adaptation to climate change, public greenery or teaching and learning projects," the Prague City Hall announced.

6 This day in history: Actress Lída Baarová dies in 2000

Czech actress Lída Baarová died on Oct. 27, 2000, aged 86, in Salzburg, Austria. Between the two world wars, Baarová became a rising movie star, first in Czechoslovakia, and then in Germany and Italy. She was equally famous for an ill-fated romance with married Reich Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels, which was portrayed in the 2016 Czech movie "Lída Baarová."

7 Prague Castle's Deer Moat to reopen to visitors

A natural ravine located below Prague Castle will reopen temporarily this weekend to visitors, following reconstruction works, Czech Radio reports. "In the 17th century, deer were let out in the moat, and during the First Republic it housed bears that Czechoslovak legionaries in Russia gave President T. G. Masaryk as a gift," according to Czech Radio. The ravine will open permanently to the public in spring.

8 Lipavský inaugurates Czech embassy in Qatar

Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs Jan Lipavský inaugurated yesterday the premises of the Czech embassy in Doha, Qatar. Lipavský tweeted that the guest list included "Minister of Sports Salah bin Ghanem Al Ali, High Representatives, diplomats, and the community in Qatar." He added that the embassy will offer "more opportunities to work together in trade, energy, or even tourism."

9 Beany bicycle firm moves production to Czechia

The owner of the Beany company, which manufactures bicycles for children, announced that he is moving production to the Czech Republic, according to Seznam Zprávy. Roman Blažek said that he made the decision for "heartfelt reasons," although production in Czechia was already 15 percent more expensive than in Asia before the energy crisis, and likely even costlier now.

10 Czech society more aware of sexual violence

 Karolína Křížová from Konsent, an NGO which focuses on preventing sexual violence, told Czech Radio that society is starting to take the issue of sexual violence more seriously after a number of high-profile cases. "There’s more and more of these cases, unrelated cases, in different areas such as universities, hospitals and politics that made it obvious that these people are not making it up and it is a broader societal issue," Křížová said.

11 Traffic disruptions announced next week due to French convoy

A military convoy of 20 vehicles with French soldiers will cross the territory of the Czech Republic next week, the Czech military police said in a press release today, without specifying where the convoy is headed. This will lead to a halt in traffic over the Radotin bridge, which is a part of the Prague ring road, and on the 11th kilometer of the D2 motorway from Brno to Breclav.

12 New deputy ombudsman appointed

The Chamber of Deputies voted with 82 out of 160 votes for appointing lawyer Vít Alexander Schorm as the new deputy ombudsman, ČTK reports. Schorm is currently the government commissioner for the Czech Republic's representation at the European Human Rights Court. Ombudsman Stanislav Křeček said the appointment was a reinforcement to the office of Public Defender of Rights.

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