Pozadí astronaut Brázda
Pozadí astronaut Brázda

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Last week

Last week 31/2007

The ISS crosses Czech skies, the country's top traffic cop is sacked, and Andy Warhol causes trouble in Prague.

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

The International Space Station flew through the skies over the Czech Republic. Newspapers reported that floods had inundated Britain. A team of five Czech secondary school students won the Physics Olympiad in Isfahan, Iran. Harry Potter overtook Zdeňek Svěrak in popularity at the cinema.

Quick intervention by Czech healthcare workers saved the life of an Alliance soldier whose left leg was blown off when a mine exploded while he patroled the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan.

The government recalled the Czech ambassador to the European Union, Jan Kohout. „Luck turned its back on us,“ said Martin Fenin, a striker on the Czech Republic's Under-20 football team, commenting on his team's loss to Argentina in the final of the FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Canada, relegating them to second place and the silver medal. The usual wave of summertime travel agency bankruptcies began.

Clients of I'm Travelling didn't fly to destinations in Tunis and Turkey from Prague's Ruzyně airport because the travel agency failed to pay for their air tickets; dozens of other travelers could not return home from Crete and other Greek islands for the same reason. The Defense Ministry set up a toll-free telephone line, 800111603, for war veterans who are in trouble and need advice.

Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg met with his European colleagues in Brussels about the new EU treaty. The state filed suit with an arbitration court in Paris against Československá obchodní banka for 27 billion crowns in compensation, in connection with the state's clearing the failing Investiční a Poštovní Banka of debts in preparation for its takeover by ČSOB. Ida Kelarová organized a showcase of Romany songs and dances at Svojanov castle.

„StB officers are not to be shoved,“ said Supreme Court justice Jiří Plácal, explaining why his institution refused to rehabilitate evangelical clergyman and Charter 77 signatory Jan Šimsa, who was sent to prison for eight months by Plácal's colleagues in 1978 for shoving a member of the Communist regime's political police who had brutally attacked his wife during a house search. The cantata Carmina Burana opened the Český Krumlov International Music Festival. The Stones rolled out of Brno's exhibition grounds.

After an extensive four-day search, the police apprehended a driver who sped through the community of Chodský Újezd near Tachov, where he hit a little girl standing on the shoulder, then ran into a woman pushing a baby buggy, and drove away from the scene of the crime; because he wasn't a Romany, Czech newspapers did not provide further details of the driver's background; the seriously injured little girl was transported to an intensive care unit in Plzeň.

With 32 funerals in one week, the number of deaths on Czech roads exceeded the previous record, and Czech traffic police chief Zdeněk Bambas told reporters that it „isn't as awful as it seems.“ After that, the Police Presidium decided to dismiss Bambas. „After years in the same function, I'm afraid Chief Bambas became afflicted by blindness and deafness – he doesn't realize just how critical the situation is with the traffic police, or even that under his command the unit has come to be viewed as the most corrupt unit in the country,“ said Interior Minister Ivan Langer, commenting on Bambas's departure.

The Czech Republic requested a seat on the UN Security Council as a non-permanent member. Parliamentary Deputy Lucie Talmanová gave birth to a son, Nicolas; the happy father, Prime Minister Mirek Topolánek, subsequently held a press conference where he announced that the boy's parents had decided his surname would be Topolánek.

Karel Hynek Mácha's Máj (May) was shot in Prague. Because of concerns about bird flu, the popularity of poultry meat declined. According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, 78 percent of Czech citizens consider corruption the „country's most grievous problem,“ which placed the Czech Republic between Nigeria and Bangladesh in the top 10 list of such countries.

„Placing tarpaulins of any kind in Prague's urban conservation area is inadmissible,“ said Michaela Půlpánová, who works in Prague City Hall's cultural section, explaining why the city wants to fine Museum Kampa 100,000 crowns for hanging on its front wall a banner with the words „Andy Warhol – Disaster Relics: Selected Prints“ to entice passers-by to an exhibition of Andy Warhol's works.

Smart Wings introduced a new flight from Brno to Moscow. According to the Czech press, the number of coins tossed into fountains by visitors to Czech towns has dwindled. A member of Aero Club Chrudim whose parachute failed to open during a jump fell from the sky into the city's streets.

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