The communist regime in the Czech Republic has been over for more than 13 years. Its history is still a subject of study and discussion. One of the contributions to this discussion is a museum of communism which opened in Prague about a year ago, welcoming an average of 100 guests per day. Busts of Lenin, posters from the totalitarian era, magazine covers of publications promoting totalitarian ideology, a mock interrogation office with decrepit black furniture and a mock shop with only a few items, including tin cans of Hungarian soup with bacon
The trial of a key figure from the Czechoslovak communist regime, Karel Hoffmann, has been taking place in Prague since January 15. Mr Hoffmann is accused of treason for ordering the interruption of Czechoslovak Radio broadcasts in August 1968, when Warsaw Pact troops invaded Czechoslovakia. But the trial was postponed indefinitely on Tuesday after Mr Hoffmann's defence lawyer accused the judge of bias.
Almost exactly a year ago, five members of the communist era political police the StB and officials from the communist Interior Ministry were sentenced in Prague for abuse of office in cases that date back more than two decades. In the late 1970s and 80s, the secret police mastermind a campaign code-named "Asanace" or "Clearance" which used intimidation and violence to force anti-Communist dissidents to flee the country. The plan was launched by communist Interior Minister Jaromir Obzina. Mr Obzina himself was charged with abuse of office, but
Hello and thanks for tuning in to this final edition of Central Europe Today. Some 13 years ago, at the end of 1989, the Communist regimes of central and eastern Europe collapsed, bringing an end to four long decades of oppressive, totalitarian rule and yet, the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia that have been independent democracies for over a decade are still referred to as post-Communist countries and their Communist background still remains very much alive today.
We've chosen the following memory for this series, not just because it's a dramatic tale of the dangers of the mountains - taking place in the Krkonose Mountains that straddle the Czech-Polish border - but also because of the insight the story gives into the way that politics can permeate all aspects of our lives. Herbert Berger from the mountain rescue service in Pec pod Snezkou tells us about the worst avalanche in Krkonose in living memory.