Czech Republic

Regional News • Europe
The Czech Republic expelled 18 Russian Embassy staff over the 2014 blast
Embassy of Russian Federation in Prague, Czechia
Embassy of Russian Federation in Prague, Czechia Credit: Hynek Moravec (Creative Commons Attribution 3.0)

The Czech Republic announced Saturday that it was expelling 18 Russian diplomats who it has identified as spies in a case related to a huge ammunition depot explosion in 2014.

"There is a reasonable suspicion that Russian secret agents of the GRU service were involved in the 2014 explosions of an ammunition dump in the Czech village of Vrbětice. The Czech Republic has consequently expelled 18 Russian diplomats.", wrote Prime Minister Andrej Babis on Twitter.

Regional News • Americas • United States
5 dead in helicopter crash, including Czech billionaire Petr Kellner
Knik Glacier, Alaska
Knik Glacier, Alaska Credit: McStyles at English Wikipedia, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Five people were killed in a helicopter crash in the Knik glacier, approximately 54 miles east of Anchorage, Alaska on Sunday. The Alaska Rescue Coordination Center was sent to the crash site and found five people dead, among them Czech billionaire Petr Kellner, and one survivor who was transported to a hospital where he remains in serious but stable condition.

Climate & Environment
Research: Europe experiences worst dry period in the last 2,100 years
Research: Europe experiences worst dry period in the last 2,100 years
Credit: / Bernard Hermant

Recent summers in Europe have been the driest in the past two millennia, according to a recent international study based on tree ring analysis. Using a specific method, the team led by Ulf Büntgen of the University of Cambridge succeeded in creating a massive dataset that traces hydroclimatic conditions in Central Europe from Roman times to the present.

For the work, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, Büntgen and his colleagues from the Czech Republic, Germany and Switzerland took more than 27,000 measurements on tree rings from 147 oak trees, covering a period of 2,100 years (75 B.C. to 2018). The samples came from historic wells, buildings, and pile dwellings, as well as from archaeological remains and shore sediments, and also from living trees from what is now the Czech Republic and parts of southeastern Bavaria.

Regional News • Europe
Czech health ministry states that ICU capacity 'will be exhausted in 2 weeks'
Czech health ministry states that ICU capacity 'will be exhausted in 2 weeks'
Credit: Mstyslav Chernov / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

"The capacity of ICU beds in our state will be exhausted in two weeks," said Vladimir Cerny, Czech Republic Deputy Health Minister. The Health Ministry describes the situation as critical with more than 120,000 active cases at the moment.

The regional hospital in Karlovy-Vary in West Bohemia receives covid patients from the surrounding area, including from badly hit regions of Cheb and Sokolov. The intensive care unit is now almost full to capacity.

“This morning we had six beds left in the ICU ward but this number could change in an hour and in two hours everything can change again,” said Vladislav Podracky, Spokesperson, Karlovy Vary Hospital.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Germany to impose travel ban from parts of Czech Republic and Austria
Germany to impose travel ban from parts of Czech Republic and Austria
Credit: JoachimKohler-HB, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 IGO)

Interior Minister Horst Seehofer has announced that Germany will impose a travel ban from Austria's province Tyrol and "border regions of the Czech Republic" in an effort to curb the spread of more potent Covid-19 mutations. Tyrol has seen an increase in new infections of the 501.V2 variant that was first detected in South Africa.

“The states of Bavaria and Saxony today asked the government to class Tyrol and the border regions of the Czech Republic as virus mutation areas, and to implement border controls,” so Seehofer. “That has been agreed with the (German) chancellor and the vice-chancellor.”

Regional News • Europe • European Union
EU leaders agree on 55% climate target by the end of 2030
EU leaders agree on 55% climate target by the end of 2030
Credit: unsplash/Markus Spiske

European leaders agreed to increase the bloc's emission-reduction target to 55 percent by 203 following night-long discussions at their two-day summit in Brussels. The coal-reliant countries Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic are finally supporting the goal after member states agreed that the new target should be delivered collectively.

Regional News • Europe
Czech and Slovak gouvernment criticise Polish and Hungarian stance on rule of law principle in new EU budget
Ivan Korčok Foreign Minister Slovakia
Ivan Korčok Foreign Minister Slovakia Credit: EU2016 SK / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons CC0 Waiver)

Despite both being in the Visegrád Group, Czechia and Slovakia apparently do not share the Polish and Hungarian rejection of the compromise on the EU´s long-term budget and Recovery Plan negotiated by the German Presidency. The foreign ministers of both states have expressed their hopes that neither Hungaria nor Poland will effectively block the implemantation of those EU funds. According to Polish gouvernment sources, a video summit of the Visegrád Group will take place to discuss the disagreements.

Czech Republic enters partial lockdown, schools and bars closed
Old Town Square during COVID-19 pandemic
Old Town Square during COVID-19 pandemic Credit: Aktron (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Under a new imposed three-week partial lockdown, the Czech Republic is closing schools, bars and clubs. Restaurant service will be limited to deliveries and takeaways. Until the end of the shutdown on November 3, public consumption of alcohol will also be banned.

Regional News • Europe
Czech Health Minister warns the country could declare coronavirus state of emergency

In a televised debate Sunday, Health Minister Adam Vojtech stated the Czech government could declare a state of emergency if a recent spike in Covid-19 cases continues in the coming days.

Vojtech said: "Should we need to have some deeper measures (against the epidemic), then the emergency state will be necessary."

The Czech Republic reported a total of 48,306 cases as of Saturday, Health Ministry data showed.

Regional News • Europe
Poland has invaded the Czech Republic in May claims now it was "merely a misunderstanding"

In May Polish soldiers crossed the border to the Czech Republic and set up camp in the foreign country. The soldiers then turned away Czech citizens who wanted to visit a church. The Czech Foreign Ministry has stated that Poland claims that the situation was "merely a misunderstanding" with the soldiers originally being ordered to guard parts of the closed border between Poland and the Czech Republic due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The "Polish soldiers are no longer present" but the Czech Republic still awaits a formal statement from Poland on the situation.