Prague mayor rents old apartment to single mother in pilot project

15:09 Director Dušan Klein, Holocaust survivor, dies at 82

Slovak-born Czech director and screenwriter Dušan Klein, a Holocaust survivor, died on Sunday aged 82, his son David Klein told reporters today. Dusan Klein made a name for himself with a series of films about “adolescent poets”. Klein shot dozens of crime novels and comedies such as “Yes, my dear friends” (1989), a satirical story made at the end of the communist regime, as well as television series. The first three installments of Klein’s legendary “poetic” series were seen by more than five million viewers in the 1980s. Klein graduated from the Prague School of Film and Television at the Academy of Performing Arts of Prague (FAMU) where he specialized in cinema and between 1975 and 1991 he worked at the Barrandov Film Studio. As a child, Klein survived the stay in the Theresienstadt ghetto during World War II.

14:43 The former Prague mayor’s apartment now houses a single mother

Prague Mayor Zdeněk Hřib has announced his participation in the Municipal Rental Agency, a newly created public service that helps make housing accessible to Praguers in need. The mayor’s apartment is now rented by a single woman with three children. The mayor said he hopes to actively contribute to solving the housing crisis in the long term, as a private individual who will rent the flat to socially disadvantaged people. Apartments must be formally selected. The mayor’s apartment is now one of the fifteen properties for which the Municipal Rental Agency has a contract. In November, a mother of three young children moved into Hřib’s former Vršovice residence.

13:55 Pardubice woman faces 20 years for abandoning newborn baby in dumpster

Pardubice regional police accused a 35-year-old woman of attempting to murder a minor. According to reports, the woman placed her newborn baby in a container in Pardubice on Saturday. Accidental witnesses found the girl severely hypothermic, and doctors managed to save her. The woman faces 15 to 20 years in prison, the head of the general crime department told reporters today.

13:20 Czech Defense Minister wants to recruit more soldiers

Czech Defense Minister Jana Černochová (Civic Democrats, ODS) wants to submit a bill on a defense investment fund that would guarantee money for military purchases for several years and recruit more soldiers into the army, she told a news conference today. She said the fund could be created in late 2023 or later. She said more soldiers are expected to be recruited already this year. Ideally, 2,000 new soldiers should enter the army per year, whereas currently it is 500 to 800 new soldiers per year. Černochová said that a soldier costs the state one million crowns a year, so it is necessary to allocate the necessary funds

More than 3,000 people protest compulsory vaccination in Prague

Some 3,500 people protesting against a government directive which imposes compulsory vaccination against Covid-19 for certain professionals and people over the age of 60 gathered in Prague’s Wenceslas Square on Sunday afternoon and then embarked on a march to the government office and Prague Castle. Stakeholders questioned the efficacy of the vaccine, inoculation of children and face masks. Police estimated that around 3,000 people started in the square with more joining later. As a result, around 3,500 people marched in the event organized by anti-lockdown group DOG Croaked/We Will Open Czechia.

A racy mural on an abandoned Czech rooftop can be seen from space

A large mural appeared on the roof of an abandoned building near the village of Maxov near Česká Lípa. The provocative painting, called “Prayer” depicting a kneeling naked woman, was created by two Czech artists known as Unlimited Freedom Ritchie and JW Mind Strike. Artists say it is the largest illegal street art piece in the Czech Republic. Czech media reported that the image also appears on Google Earth. “It cost almost 500 square meters, 60 kilograms of paint and two days of work,” the artists said of the mural on social media.

Pilsen commemorates 80th anniversary of Jewish transport to Terezín

The city of Pilsen opened an exhibition commemorating the 80th anniversary of Jewish transports to the Terezín concentration camp through historical documents and photos. Some 2,604 men, women and children were deported from the Plzeň freight station to the Terezín ghetto in January 1942. Only 204 of them survived until the end of the war. The exhibit opens today at City Hall and runs until January 28, while an outdoor exhibit is open until February 3. After Prague and Brno, Pilsen was the third Czech city from which Jews were deported.

Three missing Poles found dead in the Tatras

Three Polish tourists who went missing in the Slovak Tatras on Friday have been found dead after a weekend search. The cause of death is not yet known, the Slovak mountain rescue service reported. The bodies were discovered near the Kotlovy štít peak in the Gerlach region.

The rescue mission began Friday evening. Early findings imply that the trio consisted of a Polish guide and two clients who wanted to climb Gerlachov Peak, the highest mountain in the High Tatras. Slovak rescuers said guide did not have permission for mountain expeditions; rescuers had previously warned of adverse mountain conditions.

Vietnamese in Czech Republic celebrate Lunar New Year

The Vietnamese Association of Culture and Art in the Czech Republic held a rally at the Sapa shopping center in Prague on January 8, to celebrate the upcoming Lunar New Year (Tet) festival. The highlight of the program was a traditional long dress show. Hoang Dinh Thang, president of the Union of Vietnamese People’s Associations in Europe, praised Ms. Ao dai’s fund in Europe for its contributions to bringing Vietnamese people together across Europe.

Ambassador Thai Xuan Dung said the fund has supported Vietnamese at home affected by natural disasters, as well as the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. The Lunar New Year takes place on February 1, 2022.

Berta D. Wells