Czech dailies write open letter to US president, EU leaders

04-04-2009

Czech dailies on Saturday published an open letter to US President Barack Obama and European Union leaders, protesting a recently introduced law they say restricts press freedom. The law, which took effect April 1 prohibits the publication of police wiretappings and bans media from naming the victims of crimes. Sentences for breaking the legislation dubbed "muzzle law" run to five years behind bars and fines of up to five million crowns (225,000 dollars). The dailies said they’d published the open letter in order to highlight the problem and trigger a discussion on the necessity of freedom of speech.