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NEWS FROM THE CZECH REPUBLIC: : Czechs mark Sts Cyril and Methodius Day

    24 January 2021 Sunday

    Some 30,000 Czechs commemorated on Saturday the 1145th anniversary of the arrival of the Christian missionaries Cyril and Methodius. A public holiday in the Czech Republic, the anniversary was marked by the annual national pilgrimage to Velehrad, one of Moravia’s most important Catholic centres where Roman Cardinal Giovanni Coppa, together with Bohemian and Moravian bishops, celebrated a festive holly mass to mark the event.The brothers Cyril and Methodius, originally from Thessaloniki, arrived in Moravia in 863 to spread the gospel in a Slavic language; for that they also designed a script known as the Cyrillic alphabet.

    Vбclav Havel calls for Lisbon Treaty ratification

    Former Czech President Vбclav Havel said that the Czech Republic should press on with the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty. Mr Havel told Financial Times on Friday that the treaty should be kept alive in spite of its rejection in the Irish vote. Once the treaty is ratified, the EU should consider creating “a beautiful, simple constitution that children could learn about at school”.

    The Czech Republic has not yet started the ratification process of the document; the country’s Constitutional Court is currently reviewing the treaty to see whether it is in line with the Czech law.

    Bathory premieres at Karlovy Vary film festival

    Bathory by Juraj Jakubisko, the most expensive central European film ever made, premiered at the 43rd Karlovy Vary International Film Festival on Saturday. The movie stars English actress Anna Friel in the role of the 17th century Hungarian countess Elizabeth Bathory, famous for alleged serial murders. The film, co-produced by Czech companies, cost around 320 million crowns, or more than 21 million U.S. dollars. At the premiere, the Prague-based Slovak director Juraj Jakubisko was also awarded a Crystal Glove for his contribution to filmmaking.

    Reserve troops return from Kosovo

    Czech reserve troops returned from a peacekeeping mission in Kosovo on Friday. 116 Czech reserve troops were deployed in Kosovo at the beginning of March after the former Serbian province declared independence. During their mission, the soldiers helped the multi-national KFOR forces maintain order in the northern regions of Kosovo. The troops will be on alert until the end of July but do not expect to be called back. The regular Czech KFOR contingent remains in Kosovo.

    Litomyљl opera festival concludes with ladies’ night

    The 50th International Opera Festival Smetana’s Litomyљl concluded on Saturday with a Solo for Ladies. The concert featured singers Eleonore Marguerre, Arpinй Rahdjian and Zoryana Kushpler performing famous opera arias and duets. The three-week opera festival, held in the birthplace of the famous 19th century Czech composer Bedшich Smetana, has seen one of the most successful years in its history, having sold more than 20,000 tickets.

    Politicians to appear in Hrabal musical

    The governor of the Central Bohemia Region Pavel Bendl, along with several mayors of the region, are set to appear in a musical based on the novel “Postшiћiny” by the late Bohumil Hrabal. The musical will only be staged in three venues in Central Bohemia during the summer. The novel, known in English as “Cutting it Short”, was first published illegally in 1974.

    Thousands observe 1866 battle re-enactment

    Around 4,000 people watched the re-enactment of an 1866 battle between Austrians and Prussians in Chlum, eastern Bohemia, on Saturday. More than 400 enthusiasts, with 30 horses and 20 cannons, took part in the re-enactment. The original Battle of Chlum occurred on July 3, 1866 between the armies of the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia, as part of the Austro-Prussian War.

    Indian scientist attacked in Prague

    Indian scientist Manoj Trivedi, who worked at the Czech Academy of Sciences, was assaulted in Prague last week, a police spokesperson said on Friday. Following the attack, Mr Trivedi decided to leave the country as he no longer felt safe in the Czech Republic. The Indian scholar said he considered the attack to be racially motivated.

    Lazio Roma signs junior Silesian footballer

    Libor Kozбk, a 19-year-old footballer from Opava, in Silesia, signed a five-year contract on Saturday with Lazio Roma, one of the best clubs of the first Italian division. The Rome-based club will pay 1.2 million euros for the Czech forward. Libor Kozбk scored 11 goals for the second-division team of Opava; he is also on the under-19 Czech national football team.


    The weekend will be mostly cloudy, with rain showers in the north-west and occasional morning fogs. The highest day temperatures will reach 24 degrees centigrade.

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