The end of -ová names?

Will Ms. Nováková become Ms. Novák? Today the Czech senate has voted in favour of a change in the naming convention of Czech women. Starting in January 2022, all Czech parents will be able to opt out of the suffix for their new-born female child. Until now, only women living abroad or children and wives of expats were able to make this decision. This will require a restructuring of the way we use the language, as we will no longer be able to assume the surname of a female based on their father’s or husband’s surname. However many view this step as a step towards gender equality, since the suffix -ová semantically described the wife/daughter as belonging to the husband/father.

EU Digital COVID Certificates are up and running.

The EU started using the Digital COVID Certificate. Ireland is the only EU country that has not started accepting this document yet. On the other hand, a few countries outside the EU, such as Norway, Iceland and Lichtenstein have joined this effort. Ursula von der Leyen, the head of the European Commission, has declared that the EU Digital COVID Certificate is a symbol of an open and safe Europe. Vaccinated inhabitants of the Czech Republic can access this document at ocko.uzis.cz, after logging-in with their birth number and ID number. The certificate can also be saved in the Tečka mobile app.

Taliban is unfortunately growing stronger.

In the past few days, Taliban’s spokesperson has announced on Twitter that it has captured yet another military base in the Vardak province. This time it was the Sultan Chajl base, also known as the Vyroubal Czech camp. This name was given to it after the fallen sergeant major Robert Vyroubal who was a part of the Czech forces stationed at the base between 2010 and 2014. This news comes as the NATO forces are in the middle of pulling out every last soldier out of the war torn country. The last Czech soldiers have arrived from Afghanistan on Sunday. According to US president Joe Biden, the deadline for leaving Afghanistan by all NATO forces is September 11th 2021, clearly a symbolic date.

The UEFA EURO 2020 is spreading covid-19.

As the statistics are starting to come in from the countries hosting the largest European football tournament, many argue that opening up the stadiums to the fans was a mistake. The WHO has calculated that the event has caused a 10% spike in new covid-19 cases across Europe. They have also pointed out that while assessing the risks of such events in the future, we should not omit the fact that all fans need housing, local transportation and catering. Everywhere the fans go, they could be spreading or contracting the disease. We can only hope that the difficulties this will bring upon Europe’s front-line workers, including the Czechs, won’t demand further lockdowns.