When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Society

Corrupt Tours? In Prague, A New Crooked Way To See The City

In the Czech Republic, where corruption is rampant, some have decided to make an honest buck out of the dirty dealings: Corruption Tours, or the "Prague Cronies Safari," shows the spots around Prague where bribes have been passed and fav

Prague Bridges on Vltava River
Prague Bridges on Vltava River

*NEWSBITES

The Czech Republic has finished 57th in the 2011 Corruption Perception Index, alongside Namibia and Saudi Arabia, according to Transparency International. This ignoble ranking gave tour-operators a bright idea: for just 20 euros, you can take a "Corrupt Tour" of two to three hours, to ride around the city to see Prague's corruption hot-spots.

A tour guide points out the locations around the capital associated with illicit dealings. "Enjoy the best of the worst" is the tour operator's motto.

But the fight against corruption is starting to pay-off in other ways. First in public awareness: according to a poll conducted in March by the Public Opinion Research Center (CCVM), 41% of Czechs believe that corruption and bribes are the key factors in political decisions, up from 32% last year.

Also, enforcement is starting to bring in big fish: Vit Barta, the former Transports Minister has just been handed an 18-month suspended sentence for buying off members of his political party. Last week, the anti-corruption police charged ten people, including three civil servants, in a scam connected to the Czech EU presidency contracts. Finance Minister, Miroslav Kalousek, was also accused of steeling billions since his arrival into power.

Read the full story in French. Original article by Massimo Prandi

Photo - Ian Britton

*Newsbites are digest items, not direct translations

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

Geopolitics

The Trumpian Virus Undermining Democracy Is Now Spreading Through South America

Taking inspiration from events in the United States over the past four years, rejection of election results and established state institutions is on the rise in Latin America.

Two supporters of far-right Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro dressed in Brazilian flags during a demonstration in Belo Horizonte, Brazil.

Bolsonaro supporters dressed in national colours with flags in a demonstration in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, on November 4, 2022.

Ivan Abreu / ZUMA
Carlos Ruckauf*

-Analysis-

BUENOS AIRES — South Africa's Nelson Mandela used to say it was "so easy to break down and destroy. The heroes are those who make peace and build."

Intolerance toward those who think differently, even inside the same political space, is corroding the bases of representative democracy, which is the only system we know that allows us to live and grow in freedom, in spite of its flaws.

Recent events in South America and elsewhere are precisely alerting us to that danger. The most explosive example was in Brazil, where a crowd of thousands managed to storm key institutional premises like the presidential palace, parliament and the Supreme Court.

In Peru, the country's Marxist (now former) president, Pedro Castillo, sought to use the armed and security forces to shut down parliament and halt the Supreme Court and state prosecutors from investigating corruption allegations against him.

Keep reading...Show less

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

The latest