Smoking has long been a heated topic in the Czech Republic.
Earlier this year, legislation was drafted that would ban smoking in Czech restaurants from 2016; that bill still hasn’t been approved, however, making it highly unlikely that it will be take effect from next year.
Czech President Miloš Zeman, a notorious smoker, has stated that while he does not agree with the legislation, he would not veto it.
But Zeman’s vice may have got the Czech Republic into some more hot water last autumn.
According to Respekt, the Czech President attended a “secret” NATO summit in Bristol last September, staying at the Radisson Blu Hotel.
After his stay, the Czech Republic was (allegedly) charged an additional fee of 1600 pounds (about 60,000 CZK) – for cleaning the non-smoking suite after guests (including, presumably, the president) had smoked inside the room.
Czech officials deny the charges, saying they only paid for accommodation, while the Radisson is keeping quiet due to guest privacy. But Respekt reports that three independent sources have verified the additional fee.
That’s a hefty fine for lighting up, even for the Czech president – and especially for the Czech taxpayers footing the bill.