Ukrainian crisis in Czechia: what happens now (April 25)

PUNISHMENTS EU agrees new sanctions package against Russia

European Commissioner Věra Jourová expects the EU to agree on the sixth package of sanctions against Russia next week, she told a panel discussion on Czech television this week. weekend. In addition to the five economic sanctions packages, EU countries are discussing an embargo on energy imports, although this issue is highly controversial. Jourova stressed that maintaining unity in the European position on Russia is the top priority; Slovak Prime Minister Eduard Heger and Czech Finance Minister Zbyněk Stanjura agreed with her.

Stanjura said if Czechia fills all its gas containers before the next winter season, it will have enough gas for household heating. He said he was negotiating with other EU countries on new sources of gas for businesses. A complete economic embargo is supported in particular by the countries on the eastern flank of the EU, while Germany, Hungary and Austria oppose it for economic reasons.

REFUGEES The number of refugees in the Czech Republic has stabilized around 300,000

Since the start of the Russian invasion, the Interior Ministry has issued 308,170 visas to refugees from Ukraine. The number of visas issued has decreased in recent weeks. Interior Minister Vít Rakušan said last week that the number of refugees had stabilized at around 300,000. Although the ministry is issuing additional visas, some Ukrainians are leaving the Czech Republic.

The influx of migrants coming to Slovakia is also declining. According to data published by the Slovak Ministry of Interior, there are days when more people cross the border from Slovakia to Ukraine than in the other direction. In response to the data, the immigration police will reduce the operation of its high capacity centers for refugees.

ARM Czechia refuses arms exports to embargoed Russia

The Czech Defense Ministry has not confirmed any significant arms exports to Russia since 2014, when the European Union imposed an embargo on such exports after Russia annexed Crimea. If Czechia delivered weapons to Russia in 2015 or later, it was on the basis of contracts concluded before August 2014, said spokesman for the Ministry of Industry and Trade Vojtěch Srnka.

The Daily Telegraph wrote on Saturday that Czechia delivered weapons worth 14.3 million euros to Russia in 2015-2020, despite the embargo. Referring to an EU analysis, the British newspaper writes that Russia is likely using these weapons, including bombs and missiles, in its current military aggression against Ukraine.

EDUCATION Ukrainian children will be given priority in schools in Beroun over children from neighboring villages

Children of Ukrainian refugees will be given priority to attend primary schools in Beroun, while children from surrounding municipalities will be disadvantaged, reports Novinky.cz. The municipal administration of Beroun said the capacity was perfect for residents and children of Ukrainian refugees. However, children from neighboring villages will probably not have space.

The town hall of Beroun and the town halls of the surrounding municipalities have long been involved in a dispute over the placement of children in primary schools. The administration of Beroun said that the capacity for children in Beroun is sufficient and the capacity for refugee children is under review, noting that children from surrounding villages will be the next to be placed in schools.

RAILWAYS Rail carriers transported 120,000 refugees to Czechia

So far, national rail carriers have transported more than 120,000 refugees from Ukraine to the Czech Republic. Since the beginning of the war, they have sent 60 humanitarian liaisons to Ukraine or its borders, carrying more than 4,000 tons of humanitarian aid.

The greatest influx of passengers was recorded in the first weeks of the conflict in Ukraine. In April, their number gradually decreased. Some of the refugees who go to the Czech Republic do not stay in the country and go to other European countries.

Christi C. Elwood