President Klaus underlines links between 1939 and 1989

17-11-2009

Czech president Václav Klaus underlined the links between the events of 1989 and the more tragic events of 1939 during a visit to Prague’s Hlávkova students’ hall of residence on Tuesday. Nazi authorities rounded up around 1,200 students and executed nine of them on November 17, 1939. All Czech universities and centres of learning were closed. The clamp down was a reaction to demonstrations that had followed the death of one student, Jan Opletal.

President Klaus pointed out that the commemoration of the first event led to the second and the Velvet Revolution. He warned that proponents of Nazi and Communist ideologies still sought to impose their ideas at any price. He was later heckled when he laid a wreath at the plaque commemorating the police attack on students in 1989.