Krkonoše Mts. National Park
Agency for Nature Conservation and Landscape Protection
Czech Environmental Institute Provides information and support in the field of environmental protection for local governments.
|Background: After World War II, Czechoslovakia fell within the
Soviet sphere of influence. In 1968, an invasion by Warsaw Pact troops
ended the efforts of the country's leaders to liberalize party rule and
create "socialism with a human face." Anti-Soviet demonstrations
the following year ushered in a period of harsh repression. With the
collapse of Soviet authority in 1989, Czechoslovakia regained its freedom
through a peaceful "Velvet Revolution." On 1 January 1993, the
country underwent a "velvet divorce" into its two national
components, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Now a member of NATO, the
Czech Republic has moved toward integration in world markets, a
development that poses both opportunities and risks.
Government type: parliamentary democracy
Currency: 1 koruna (Kc) = 100 haleru
Geography of the Czech Republic
Location: Central Europe, southeast of Germany
People of the Czech Republic
The majority of the 10.5 million inhabitants of the Czech Republic are ethnically and linguistically Czech (95%). Other ethnic groups include Germans, Roma, and Poles. After the 1993 division, some Slovaks remained in the Czech Republic and comprise roughly 3% of the current population. The border between the Czech Republic and Slovakia is open for former citizens of Czechoslovakia. Laws establishing religious freedom were passed shortly after the revolution of 1989, lifting oppressive regulations enacted by the former communist regime. Major denominations and their estimated percentage populations are Roman Catholic (39%) and Protestant (3%). A large percentage of the Czech population claim to be atheists (40%), and 16% describe themselves as uncertain. The Jewish community numbers a few thousand today; a synagogue in Prague memorializes the names of more than 80,000 Czechoslovak Jews who perished in World War II.
Population: 10,241,138 (July 2005 est.)
SOURCES: The World Factbook, U.S. Department of State
Mother Earth Travel > Country Index > Czech Republic > Map Economy History