Tuesday News Briefing
Students launch anti-communist hunger strike; Unemployment rate nears 10 percent
Posted: January 8, 2013
The recent success of the Communist Party (KSCM) in the fall regional elections has led to protests by a group of South Bohemian students.
South Bohemian students and other volunteers have launched a chain hunger strike in protest at the participation of the Communists (KSCM) in the regional government at midnight. Some 60 people want to participate in it, but their number will probably rise, the organizers said. "The rules are simple. Participants in the chain hunger strike must not eat for 24 hours and they can drink only water," organizer Simon Heller, who is the first to take part in the hunger strike, explained.
Prime Minister Petr Necas, chairman of the Civic Democrats (ODS), faces a criminal complaint filed by defense attorney Vaclav Laska on suspicion of having bribed three ODS deputies-rebels with lucrative posts in firms with state participation. Laska, who cooperates with Transparency International, also filed a complaint against the three former deputies, Marek Snajdr, Petr Tluchor and Ivan Fuksa who, he says, may have accepted a bribe. Necas called the complaint absurd.
Mayors throughout the Czech Republic have followed the example of their counterparts from the Zlin region and removed President Vaclav Klaus's portrait from their offices in protest against the amnesty he declared on New Year. Michal Spendlik, mayor of the Zelechovice village and one of the step's initiators, said more than a hundred mayors joined the protest by noon today, in addition to school head teachers who have the pictures of Klaus removed from classrooms. The Presidential Office reacted by stating teachers should protect children from displays of "cheap political struggle."
The unemployment rate in the Czech Republic grew to between 9.3 and 9.4 percent in December from November's 8.7 percent, and the figure is to increase further in the following months, the Czech News Agency reported. The figure is to approach a 10 percent level, analysts said.
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Tags: czech republic, czech republic news, czech economy, czech unemployment, czech communist party, czech hunger strike, vaclav klaus.
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