published: 15.09.2012, 18:23 | updated: 15.09.2012 19:32:28
Prague - Czech Prime Minister Petr Necas (Civic Democrats, ODS) said the ban on sales of hard liquor was declared with his knowledge and that it was necessary to protect citizens´ health, in an interview with Radiozurnal radio station today.
The ban of selling and serving drinks with more than 20 percent of alcohol was declared by Health Minister Leos Heger (TOP 09) with immediate effect on Friday evening.
The measure was taken in reaction to a number of serious poisonings with methyl alcohol, 19 of which ended in death. Some people have gone blind.
"The minister consulted with me on it," Necas said.
He said the Health Ministry and the government´s emergency committee have determined places where the bootleg alcohol appeared.
"According to the data he (Heger) submitted to me it was clear that the risks are not restricted to stall sales only, but that they also include brick-and-mortar shops and consumption in restaurants," Necas said.
He conceded that this is an extraordinary measure and said he hopes citizens will comprehend that it was necessary in the interest of their health and lives.
Hundreds of police have been checking shops, restaurants and other facilities across the country since Friday evening.
They say all honour the ban, but the checks will continue.
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