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Last week19. 3. 20075 minut

Last week 12/2007

Jára Cimrman's millionth disc was sold amid great fanfare. Soft drink producer Kofola swallowed up Poland's Hoop. The Czech polar expedition returned after a two-month stay at its station on Antarctica's James Ross Island.

  • Autor: Respekt
• Autor: Respekt
Fotografie: Last week by Pavel Reisenauer • Autor: Respekt
Fotografie: Last week by Pavel Reisenauer • Autor: Respekt

Jára Cimrman's millionth disc was sold amid great fanfare. Soft drink producer Kofola swallowed up Poland's Hoop. The Czech polar expedition returned after a two-month stay at its station on Antarctica's James Ross Island.

The emerald creeper Strongylodon blossomed in the Botanical Gardens in Prague's Troja district. Meteorological reports informed people that the temperature is going to drop following the current run of warm days. Topolánek's Cabinet decided to sell 7 percent of ČEZ.

„I have been standing on the front line for 17 years now, my life endangered a number of times, constantly under the pressure of threats and anonymous letters; where were you with your activity back when a member of a large criminal organisation came to kill me two years ago?“ the head of the National Anti-Drug Brigade Jiří Komorous wrote to a Mladá fronta Dnes editor who uncovered and published a letter from 1987 in which Komorous wrote to the head of the political police that his "life-long goal is service in the StB [secret police]."

Jana Kánská-Horáková, living in exile, gave producer David Mrnka approval to make a film about her mother, the politician Milada Horáková, who was executed by the Communists.

A draft bill granting a 20,000-crown bonus in the pensions of all Czech citizens who have received an Olympic medal at some point in their lives was passed to its second reading by the Chamber of Deputies. The Czech Republic's public debt topped a billion crowns.

The Interior Ministry's Inspectorate arrested a group of 11 Kladno traffic policemen and accused them of corruption. Building owners called upon the government to at least exempt them from taxes as compensation for the years of thievery in the form of regulated rent. The cutting of grapevines began in Moravia.

„Today in every café I am assaulted by recorded music that isn't music anymore, just background, just wallpaper, just a symbol of everything becoming commonplace; there is no escaping it – but they are going to ban smoking there,“ Slovak keyboardist and musical genius Marián Varga said in an interview for Hospodářské noviny's magazine.

Vendula Svobodová, the widow of the recently-deceased pop music composer Karel Svoboda, told Mladá fronta Dnes that she will never again find someone like Karel. Prague councillors applied to the International Olympic Committee to host the 2016 Summer Olympics in the Czech capital. The guardians of Charter 77's legacy met in Prague's St. Anne's church.

Unable to find a perpetrator, police suspended their investigation into a murder in which members of the Revolutionary Guard killed five underage members of the Hitlerjugend „escaping“ from the Postoloprty refugee camp in 1945.

„Castro's legacy in Cuba will be very similar to Stalin's legacy in Russia, Pol Pot's in Cambodia and Hitler's in Germany; they will be memories of concentration camps, torture, exile, broken families, death, tears, blood. Castro will go down in history as one of the cruellest dictators ever – as a man who tormented his own people,“ wrote Arman Valladeras, the director of New York's Human Rights Foundation, who served 22 years in Castro's and Che Guevera's gulag, in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece quoted by Hospodářské noviny. The article addressed the current debate on the significance of Fidel Castro and the hope or sorrow aroused by news of his approaching death.

In Prague's Na Homolce Hospital a robot first performed a heart operation. The Tibetan flag flew over the town halls of several Czech municipalities and over the Environment Ministry, in protest against the continuing Chinese occupation and destruction of Tibet. The former head of Prima TV, Martin Dvořák, became the current head of Dopravní podnik hl. m. Prahy (Prague Public Transport Company).

Liquor producer Stock Plzeň increased the prices of its spirits. Police inspectors have begun looking into whether Police President Vladislav Husák passed on sensitive information from the investigation of corruption cases in which the highest-ranking Social Democratic politicians are involved from their time in power.

The UN advised the Czech Republic to stop local authorities from resettling Romany citizens from towns and villages, to not send Romany children en masse to special schools and to do something about the domestic boom of neo-Nazi gatherings and concerts. „We are seriously alarmed by Czech society's continuing negative attitude and prejudice towards Romany,“ the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination stated in its Annual Report.

Statisticians calculated that the domestic economy grew by 6.1 percent last year and analysts declared that a slowdown threatens the local economy. Josef Žáček exhibited his Dream of the Apocalypse in the North Bohemian Art Gallery in Litoměřice. After 260 years, the largest Czech spruce tree fell to the ground in the Boubín primeval forest.

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