American actor Liev Schreiber to attend Karlovy Vary film festival

Plus: General Petr Pavel to run for president, senate approves lower social insurance fees for part time jobs, and more.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 28.06.2022 16:42:00 (updated on 29.06.2022) Reading time: 7 minutes

June 29, 2022

CULTURE American actor Liev Schreiber heading to Karlovy Vary

The Karlovy Vary Film Festival has announced that American actor, screenwriter, and director Liev Schreiber, will return as a guest of the festival after 18 years. Schreiber and the actor Elijah Wood presented the film "Everything is Illuminated" at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival in 2004. A film adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer's book of the same name and featuring the story of a young American looking for his roots in Ukraine, it marked Schreiber's directorial debut. Parts of the film were shot in the Czech Republic.

The organizers also announced today that the opening film of the 56th edition of the festival will be "Superheroes," a romantic film by director Paolo Genovese from last year. The festival will close with a fantasy film by director George Miller, "Three Thousand Years of Longing."

elections General Pavel to run for president, announce candidacy in August

"I am determined to take part in the elections, I am determined to win them, and that is why I am currently preparing for the candidacy," retired General Petr Pavel announced. He told journalists today that he plans to officially announce his candidacy in August. He also said he wants to present his transparent account in early July. Pavel has introduced his sponsors and called on his supporters to send a contribution to him. He said he has already gathered a part of the 50,000 people's signatures he needs to run in the election, but did not disclose the number of signatures.

Pavel said he views the announcement of the candidacy as the start of his campaign before the presidential race, and he wants to do so at the end of the summer holidays. He said voters can reckon with his bid, which could only be prevented by things such as a serious illness of him or someone in his surroundings.

Covid Covid is most frequent death cause in Czechia in 2021

Disease caused by novel coronavirus was the most frequent cause of death in Czechia in 2021, causing almost 25,500 or 18 percent of deaths, the Czech Statistical Office announced at a press conference today. In 2020, when the coronavirus epidemic began in Czechia, the number of deaths was 15 percent higher than in 2019, and in 2021 the number of deaths increased by a further 8 percent.

WORK Senate approves lower social insurance fees for part time jobs

Employers will pay lower social insurance contributions for their staff in selected cases of part-time jobs, 5 percent less than the usual 24.8 percent, based on the government draft amendment that the Senate passed. The measure is to motivate employers to create and offer part-time jobs and to support the people who are vulnerable in the labor market. To take effect, the bill still needs to be signed by President Miloš Zeman.

The relief will apply to those working for eight to 30 hours a week if they belong to the defined vulnerable groups of employees, which are people over 55, parents and foster parents of children under 10, secondary school and university students, the unemployed at a retraining stay and the disabled. It will also apply to the employees under 21, without the part-time job condition.

government New education minister to take post on July 1

The nominee for education minister, Vladimír Balaš, who is to replace outgoing Petr Gazdík, is likely to take up the post on July 1, Balaš told journalists after meeting President Miloš Zeman.

Balaš spoke with Zeman about the need to continue with the modernization of the educational sector. Zeman will appoint Balaš to the post on Wednesday. Gazdík has decided to step down over a corruption scandal at the Prague Public Transport Company (DPP) on June 30.

politics Unions negotiated 10 percent on some salaries

At the next meeting with trade union representatives, the governing coalition did not reach a full agreement on increasing the salaries of civil servants. The partial agreement is to increase by 10 percent for a part of the state's employees from Sept. 1, which was a government proposal. Among those who could get a tenth more from September are, for example, non-teaching staff and people from the Ministry of Culture. 

covid Contagious variant continues to spread in Czechia

Czechia had 1,181 new confirmed Covid cases on Tuesday, two times more than a week ago and over 1,000 for the second day in a row, marking a significant increase, according to Health Ministry data. The epidemic has been accelerating since early June, but in the last few days, the increase is even steeper.

The National Institute of Public Health (SZÚ) said that the more contagious subvariants BA.4 and BA.5 of the Omicron virus were behind the COVID incidence rise. According to available data, the new subvariants do not cause a more serious course of the disease, but they are over 10 times more contagious compared with the original variant.

environment First hydrogen filling station built in Ostrava

The first public hydrogen filling station in the Czech Republic was put into operation in Ostrava. Its construction took two months and cost about CZK 14 million. The station, intended for passenger cars, is located in Vítkovice at the entrance to the production area.

The device is in trial operation. A personal vehicle can be filled there for an introductory uniform price of CZK 2,500 or EUR 100, regardless of the volume of the tank. So far, about 10 cars a day are expected to be filled.

art Tapestry by Czech artists to be transferred to Brussels

A tapestry made by Czech designers to decorate the EU Council seat during the Czech presidency of the Council of the EU was hung for trial on a special structure in Veletržní Palác in Prague on Monday and will be soon sent to Brussels for its unveiling on July 12.

June 28, 2022

Culture Ukrainian ambassador objects to Russian film in Karlovy Vary

Ukrainian Ambassador to the Czech Republic Yevhen Perebyinis sent an open letter to the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival to protest against the inclusion of the Russian film “Captain Volkonogov Escaped.” Perebyinis said the film was made with Russian state support and its creators participated in Russian propaganda films. He added that the festival should not tolerate the official logo of a terrorist state on the screen. Festival program director Karel Och previously said that the festival does not want to boycott Russian works. Och added that the film, which was invited to the festival before the war in Ukraine started, takes place in the 1930s and condemns Stalinism.

Weather Strong thunderstorms will occur until Thursday

Heavy thunderstorms with gusts of wind and hail will occur in the western half of the Czech Republic at least until Thursday, and especially smaller rivers can occasionally reach the second- to third-degree flood levels. In Moravia and Silesia due to drought and heat, the warning about the danger of fires remains valid. From Wednesday to Friday, temperatures in some areas will exceed 31 degrees, the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (CHMÚ) said. Strong and very strong thunderstorms accompanied by gusts of wind up to 90 kilometers per hour, short-term precipitation totals around 50 millimeters, and smaller hail are expected in Bohemia and on the Czech-Moravian border tonight, Wednesday afternoon, and Thursday night.  

Near Katovice, South Bohemia, 187.5 millimeters of rain fell on Monday evening, corresponding to the normal total for four months. The level of the Otava river rose more than a meter.

Politics Ombudsman Křeček deprives his deputy of all agenda

Czech Ombudsman Stanislav Křeček has deprived his deputy Monika Šimůnková of all agendas as of July 1, citing “human and managerial complications accompanying her work.” Šimůnková told ČTK that she would turn to the lower house of Parliament and would also consider filing a lawsuit against Křeček for his statements against her and his behavior toward her during the 2.5 years she spent in the post. Křeček said he felt an atmosphere of mistrust in dealing with her, and mentioned similar issues in her work in her previous work at the Government Office, without giving details.

European Union Labor Ministry sets goals for EU presidency

The Labor and Social Affairs Ministry will focus on tackling the refugee wave in Europe and on measures in support of households and companies amid the rising energy prices during the Czech EU presidency starting in July, Minister Marian Jurečka told a press conference today. He also mentioned the need to define conditions for jobs mediated by platforms, to deal with equal remuneration of women and men, and the care for seniors by their families. He also said he wants to focus on the adaptation and integration of the immigrants and on financing the relevant measures.

Immigration Police detain some 22 migrants at Brno railway station

Police in Brno detained 20 Syrians and two Afghans at the main railway station in Brno this morning, the police announced. He said the 22 migrants had traveled by train from Hodonín, South Moravia. The migrants were sent to further administrative procedures. After detaining migrants, the police have to find out from which country they entered the Czech Republic and whether they applied for asylum in another country before. Then they are usually returned to the country from which they arrived or where they applied for asylum. They can also seek asylum in the Czech Republic.

History Prague 2 installs more 'stones of the disappeared'

New Stolpersteine have been installed in Italská Street, Čelakovského sady and Rašínovo nábřeží. The small brass-topped paving stones are engraved with the names of Holocaust victims and placed where they lived before they were transported to camps or executed. There are now over 400 of the stones in Prague and many more across the Czech Republic. The international project began in Cologne, Germany, in 1992 and the first ones appeared in Prague in 2008. the German name “Stolpersteine” translates to “stumbling stones” but they are often called “stones of the disappeared” in English.  

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