The Czech construction company Avers has been hired by the Iraqi government to restore the Taq Kisra brick vault, the largest of its kind in the world and a rare piece of ancient architecture 30 km southeast of Baghdad. The vault, which was built by the Persians in the sixth century, is 48 meters long, 24 meters wide and 37 meters in height. Restoration of the vault, which is threatened with collapse, is estimated to cost $5 million, and will include the stabilization of the structure and the addition of tourist facilities in the area.
The unused railway station of Prague-Bubny, from where Jews were transported to camps during World War II, is being considered as a memorial to the wartime fate of local Jews. The Shoah Memorial organization is behind the effort and a public presentation was unveiled June 11 along with concerts, educational activities and talks by survivors. If the plan is approved, the station, which sits along the Vltava River, will be restored to what it looked like in the 1940s. Close to 50,000 people were deported from the station during the war.
Representatives from the Czech Education Ministry and the U.S. Energy and State departments will sign an agreement June 12 to establish a nuclear cooperation center, which will be attached to the Czech Technical University in Prague. The goal is to promote scientific cooperation between foreign partners and is estimated to cost between 200 billion and 300 billion Kč. The project will be funded by the United States, the Education Ministry and the university and should be completed by 2025.
The Russian Prosecutor's Office invited Czech authorities to visit detained Russian businessman Alexei Torubarov June 10. Torubarov fled to the Czech Republic for political asylum in May after being accused of blackmail and fraud in Russia. Torubarov denies the allegations, but his application for asylum failed due to an international warrant for his arrest, and he was sent back to Moscow. Various Czech ministers tried to stop his extradition, and his detention is under criticism from the human rights organization "Help A Man," which fears corruption is involved in Torubarov's case.