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Last week

Last week 32/2007

Bergman meets Death, a senator returns money extorted from his assistant, and why bears and phones don't mix.

  • 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

A drop in American oil reserves pushed the price per barrel up to an unprecedented $78.77. Michelangelo Antonioni and Ingmar Bergman passed away. Parliament's lower house, the Chamber of Deputies, decided that the election of the head of state will take place on February 7th or 8th of next year.

Eight new crossings were established on the Czech-Austrian border. Together with their colleagues from around the world, Czech Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts commemorated the 100th anniversary of British Lieutenant-General Robert Baden-Powell started the first Scout group in human history on the English island of Brownsea.

A soldier from the Czech unit who had previously been shot during guard duty in the Afghan province of Helmand was transported from Kabul to Prague. The Prague law firm Kines, specializing in technology and electronic communications, decided to open a branch in Silicon Valley. Newspapers reported that the Russians want to appropriate the North Pole.

„He breached not the criminal code, but the civil code, so I have no reason to get engaged in the matter, and I definitely will not draw any conclusions from it,“ remarked Senate Chairman Přemysl Sobotka (Civic Democrats - ODS) of a court ruling ordering Bruntál Senator Jiří Žák (ODS) to return to his former assistant the 50,000 crowns she was forced to remit to the senator's wife from her parliamentary salary under pressure and threats of firing by Žák.

The excursion steam boat Vyšehrad crashed into a flood-gate on the Vltava river near Klecany. Authorities lifted their ban on entering the Novohrad forest. For the first time in history, one of 20 European Young Investigators Awards was bestowed on a Czech – physicist Martin Schnabl, currently of Princeton University in the USA – for his pioneering research in the area of elementary particles. Former Defense Minister Jiří Šedivý was named assistant to NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer.

Following a change of sponsors, the name of Sparta football club's Prague stadium was changed from Toyota Arena to Axa Arena. Two young metal thieves died when the roof of an unused factory hall on Poldi Kladno's premises collapsed as the duo hunted for income. „He confessed to the investigator that suicidal intentions were behind it,“ a police spokesperson told the media, explaining why a 21-year-old man suddenly drove into oncoming traffic at high speed and hit an oncoming car; while the „suicide“ survived the crash with light scratches, the other driver (36) suffered „extensive and serious injuries,“ according to the physician's report.

Seznam.cz and Atlas.cz joined forces under competitive pressure from Google. At an international arbitration court in Paris, the Finance Ministry accused the ČSOB bank of inducing politicians to act in its favor during a crisis at failing rival IPB seven years ago, thanks to which ČSOB took over IPB in a way that resulted in the state losing billions of crowns.

War hero Colonel Ota Bruck, who fought against Hitler in the Czechoslovak Army, passed away at the age of 92. The Český rozhlas (Czech Radio) website offered Johann Sebastian Bach's Brandenburg concertos for download: http://www.rozhlas.cz/ddur/ An expedition of owners of small Czech motorcycles set out to conquer Mount Elbrus. „I had walked maybe a hundred meters from the car, when all of a sudden my mobile phone started ringing in my pocket; that unexpected sound in the quiet of the woods must have startled it,“ a Slovak hunter told the media, explaining why a bear attacked and seriously injured him during a nighttime tour of a central Slovakia forest.

The final July tally of Czech road deaths rose to 113 – 41 more than last year. The German Transport Ministry announced that roughly a thousand of the worst and least drivers in their country drive with licenses issued in the Czech Republic, and asked Czech authorities to suspend those licenses. The company Student Agency took control of the Prague-Karlovy Vary bus route.

After 13 years, the trial of Kurdish emigrant Dr. Yekta Uzunoglu, who was accused of torturing and blackmailing his countrymen in the early 1990s, ended in absolute acquittal; the media and those familiar with the case warned from the beginning that the case against Uzunoglu lacked credibility and had the characteristics of a police-mafia manipulation.

An unknown tomb was discovered in the Želiv monastery's Basilica of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. The UN Committee for Human Rights appealed to the Czech Republic to finally compensate hundreds of Romany women who were – without their knowledge and usually during childbirth – sterilized by local doctors in the past. The state sanctioned the sale by property owners of Communist-era anti-nuclear-attack shelters.

The first burčák of the season was tapped in wine-growing regions.

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