Morning headlines: Czech Post to close this weekend, Prague airport collapse due to software glitch

Plus: Hlubuček resigns as Prague deputy mayor and more headlines for June 16, 2022.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 15.06.2022 16:52:00 (updated on 16.06.2022) Reading time: 5 minutes

June 16, 2022

Politics Hlubuček resigns as Prague deputy mayor

Petr Hlubuček (STAN), who is among the 11 accused in the case of the Prague Transport Company (DPP) financial management, has decided to resign as a Prague deputy mayor and city councilor, STAN Prague branch spokeswoman Šárka Kuželová said last night. He also stepped down as a member of the Prague Services supervisory board and the DPP supervisory board. Hlubuček’s lawyer called for the public to respect his client’s presumption of innocence.  On Wednesday, the police organized crime squad (NCOZ) accused 11 people over the Prague Public Transport Company's (DPP) suspicious financial management.  

Travel Prague Airport problems caused by software glitch

The traffic control system at Prague's Václav Havel Airport collapsed afternoon due a software problem, according to the Air Navigation Services of the Czech Republic (ŘLP ČR), the state company responsible for handling air traffic. It was repaired overnight and operations should be returning to normal. The new generation of the Top Sky system, which was the source of the disruption, has been used by Czech flight dispatchers since this year. The system from the French supplier Thales is also used in Austria, Sweden, and Denmark, among others.

Services Czech Post Office to close over the weekend

Czech Post Office branches that are normally open will be closed on the weekend due to the operational maintenance of data centers. Partner services will not issue or accept shipments. The shutdown begins on Friday, June 17 at 7 pm and will last until Monday, June 20, at 7 am, according to a notice on the Czech Post Office (Česká pošta) website. Websites and applications managed by Czech Post, such as shipment tracking, will also not be available during downtime. People will also not be able to view the website of the Postal Museum. The state-owned company operates about 3,200 branches. 

Politics Fiala meets with EP president

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola is in Prague to meet with Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala and other Czech leaders to discuss the upcoming Czech presidency of the European Union Council, which starts July 1. She will also meet with students at Charles University. Metsola, from Malta, has been EP president since January and is the first female president since 2002.

Crime Police accuse man of quadruple murder

A 31-year-old man has been accused of having murdered four people – his 32-year-old wife and their three children, all under five years old – in a family house in Louka near Vsetin, Zlín region, in April. According to the police, the man cut himself with a knife afterward and then caused an explosion in their house on April 24. The man faces 15 to 20 years in prison or even an exceptional punishment, from 20 to 30 years or even life imprisonment in the Czech Republic, if convicted. The police were only been able to question the man in recent days due to his severe injuries caused by the explosion and subsequent fire.  

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June 15, 2022

Ukraine MPs call for further support to Ukraine, its EU integration

The Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of the Czech parliament, called on the government to continue supporting Ukraine and push for its EU accession. It also condemned Russian policy towards Ukraine in a resolution adopted today after the online address of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Russia is striving for the destruction of cohesion and statehood of Ukraine, the MPs say in a resolution. Only MPs from the anti-EU opposition party Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD), which stands against further arms supplies to Ukraine, voted against the draft resolution.

corruption Hřib called for resignation of deputy Hlubuček over corruption scandal

Prague's mayor Zdeněk Hřib called for the resignation of his deputy, Petr Hlubuček, who appears to be among the accused in connection with the management of the Prague Transport Company (DPP). Hřib said that he was still trying unsuccessfully to contact Hlubuček and the coalition would propose his dismissal at Thursday's meeting of deputies. Police officers from the National Headquarters against Organized Crime (NCOZ) intervened in Hlubuček's office at the town hall and the DPP building on Wednesday, and prosecution is launched against 11 people, according to the High Prosecutor's Office in Prague.

Hřib also wrote on Twitter that he believes this development will influence their coalition partners to support anti-corruption measures in the city companies. "The pirates did not even vote for the appointment of anyone from the current management of the transport company. They were not selected in open competitions," he said.

economy Govt. party proposes privatization of Budvar brewery

The government party TOP 09 has raised the issue of privatization of some state-owned enterprises, including the Budějovický Budvar brewery. In its resolution, the party called for the sale of state property that is not essential for the performance of its main functions. The possible privatization of the České Budějovice brewery has been discussed before, and the chairwoman of the TOP 09 party, Markéta Pekarová Adamová, spoke in favor of its sale even before the elections to the Chamber of Deputies. An MP opposed the proposal, saying "selling Budvar is like the Saudis selling oil fields."

disinformation Czechia to suspend more Russian TV stations

Czech operators and distributors of television signals must not spread the programs of Rossiya RTR/RTR Planeta, Rossiya 24/Russia 24, and TV Centre International as part of the fight against disinformation, the Czech Telecommunications Office (ČTU) said on its website, referring to an updated EU order. The order is valid for operators in all EU countries.

So far, Russia Today and Sputnik have been banned in Czechia. Czech operators mostly switched off Russian television channels at the end of February and the start of March. The Internet association CZ.NIC blocked eight pro-Russian disinformation websites for three months.

weather Strong storms, wind, and hail coming to Czechia

In a large part of the Czech Republic, thunderstorms will occur on Thursday, accompanied by strong winds or hail. On Thursday afternoon storms will hit the southeastern half of Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia, accompanied by strong wind gusts of about 70 kilometers per hour, hail, and, to a lesser extent, torrential rain. The storms are expected to end in the evening.

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