Poll: Three-fifths of Czechs hope Brits remain in EU

21-06-2016 09:33 | Ian Willoughby

Sixty percent of Czechs do not want to see the United Kingdom leave the European Union, according to a poll conducted by the Median agency for Czech Radio. In the survey just days before the Brexit referendum 22 percent of respondents said they hoped the British electorate voted to depart from the EU. Concern over the economic impact was the most common reason respondents had for wanting the UK to stay in the bloc.

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21-06-2016 10:25 | Ian Willoughby

Czech police president Tomáš Tuhý has filed a criminal complaint against the head of the Ostrava branch of the force’s organised crime unit, Jiří Komárek. Mr. Tuhý made the petition to the body that investigates police wrongdoing, GIBS, after Mr. Komárek on Monday accused him of the “brutal” leaking of information linked to a case. The police president denies the charge and accuses the organised crime inspector of defamation and other crimes. The dispute comes after Mr. Tuhý last week pushed through a divisive restructuring under which the organised crime unit is to be merged with the anti-corruption police. 

21-06-2016 10:03 | Ian Willoughby

There were 12 Czech passengers on a coach that crashed in Serbia on Tuesday morning, killing five people. It was not immediately clear whether any of the Czechs died in the accident, which occurred when the Slovak-registered bus carrying 29 people went off the motorway. The passengers were on their way back from a holiday in Corfu. 

21-06-2016 09:34 | Ian Willoughby

Part of the Dancing House, perhaps Prague’s most distinctive modern building, is to be turned into a hotel. The four-star Dancing House Hotel will accommodate its first guests in August, the operators said. It will offer 21 rooms, including suites in the towers of the Dancing House, which was designed in the mid-1990s by the world-renowned Frank Gehry and local architect Vlado Milunič. 

21-06-2016 09:33 | Ian Willoughby

Sixty percent of Czechs do not want to see the United Kingdom leave the European Union, according to a poll conducted by the Median agency for Czech Radio. In the survey just days before the Brexit referendum 22 percent of respondents said they hoped the British electorate voted to depart from the EU. Concern over the economic impact was the most common reason respondents had for wanting the UK to stay in the bloc. 

21-06-2016 07:03 | Chris Johnstone

In tennis, the draw for the Fed Cup will pitch holders the Czech Republic against Spain. The opening tie of the top women’s team competition will be held on February 11 and 12 2017. The Czech Republic will host the tie and be able to choose a surface to their liking and which will discomfort their opponents. Team captain Petr Pála said the draw was not bad given that the team wanted to avoid a trip to the US. 

21-06-2016 07:02 | Chris Johnstone

ANO leader and minister of finance Andrej Babiš has said he would withdraw from politics if his party was forced into opposition following elections to the lower house of parliament scheduled for next year. Babiš said in an interview with Hospodářské Noviny that he would prefer to go back to business and travel than play at politics in opposition. Polls have consistently given ANO a lead over their nearest rival, fellow government party, the Social Democrats, over the past year. Babiš added in the interview that ANO had been disingenuopus in sealing the current coalition and should have pressed for more seats to reduce the chances of being outvoted in Cabinet. 

20-06-2016 18:40 | Chris Johnstone

A new coalition agreement has been agreed between parties aimed at governing the Czech Republic’s second biggest city Brno. The new deal includes all the parties that took part in the previous coalition that collapsed in April. These are ANO, Live Brno, the Greens, and Christian Democrats. This time round, the TOP 09 party has been added to the coalition. Petr Vokřál will remain as mayor but changes have been made to the executive council. One of the main promises of the new coalition is a cut in tram and other public transport fares in the city. 

20-06-2016 15:26 | Chris Johnstone

A British withdrawal from the European Union could result in a drop in Czech growth of up to 0.23 percent of Gross Domestic Product a year or around 10.4 billion crowns, according to a study released on Monday by the consultancy Deloitte. The Deloitte study is based on figures from the British Treasury which sees GDP down by 3.6 percent in the short term compared to the scenario if the country remained in the group of 28 countries. The long term impact over 15 year is shrinking of GDP to the tune of 3.4 to 4.3 percent. The consequences are based on Britain, like Norway, signed up to the European Economic Area (EEA) if it quit the EU. The impact would be much more dramatic if Britain just remained in the World Trade Organisation. 

20-06-2016 15:26 | Chris Johnstone

In football, former player for the Czech national team and one of the stars in the 2012 European Championships, Petr Jiráček, has been loaned to north Bohemian club Jablonec for the next year. Midfielder Jiráček has been playing for the last year for Sparta Prague after coming back from spells in the German Bundesliga for Wolfsburg and Hamburg. He made an impression previously at Viktoria Plzeň after being discovered at second division Sokolov. 

20-06-2016 13:52 updated | Chris Johnstone

The head of the Ostrava unit of a special police squad for combating organized crime has told public service broadcaster Czech Television that Czech police president Tomáš Tuhý is suspected of a serious leak of information concerning investigations into a case. Jiří Komárek said he wanted to take his evidence before a parliamentary committee. He added that the evidence would bolster the arguments that that moves to reorganize the police are not based on any objectives such as increased efficiency but are intended to get rid of the head of the police unit for combating organized crime, Robert Šlachta. Šlachta, who has already stepped down from his post, called Monday for a special meeting of parliament’s security committee. The moves to reform the police and merge two of its key units have sparked a crisis in the Czech government coalition with the second biggest party, ANO, now calling for a rewrite of aspects of the agreement between the three government parties. Police president Tuhý later denied being behind any leak. 

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