As Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš defended his government’s decision not to accept even a single migrant at the EU summit in Salzburg, trouble was brewing for him at home. A proposal for the Czech Republic to take in 50 Syrian orphans, has gained increasing support, and the prime minister is being showered with requests to break from his policy and make a humanitarian gesture.
The opposition TOP 09 party plan to submit a resolution calling on the
government to take in 50 Syrian orphans from refugee camps. They will put
the matter to the lower house on Wednesday. The party’s Markéta
Pekarová Adamová said a civilised country should be capable of making
such a symbolic humanitarian gesture.
The move comes after Prime Minister Andrej Babiš said he was not prepared to take in any such orphans, arguing that children should be helped in the places they come from. Mr. Babiš recently said he would not accept “a single refugee”.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has come under fire for outright rejecting a proposal to take in 50 Syrian orphans – or even a single refugee until the EU secures its borders. In an interview published on Saturday, he said the Czech Republic had demonstrated its solidarity in other, meaningful ways and has its orphans to worry about.
Earlier this year the young piano virtuoso Tomáš Kačo performed for the first time at New York’s famous Carnegie Hall. It was the fulfilment of a long-held dream for the 31-year-old, who comes from a large Romany family in a small Czech town and was a youth prodigy before seizing a life-changing chance to study in the US. I caught up with Tomáš Kačo when he was visiting Prague last week from his home in LA. My first question: When was he first exposed to music in a meaningful way?
Czech MEP Michaela Šojdrová of the Christian Democrats, has asked for a
meeting with Prime Minister Andrej Babiš to try to persuade him that the
Czech Republic should take in 50 Syrian orphans from a migrant camp in
Šojdrová, who first floated the idea, said that taking in child migrants would be a show of solidarity.
Prime Minister Babiš, who is strictly against taking in migrants, sharply rejected the idea at the weekend saying the Czech Republic was ready to help these and other orphans in their country of origin, where the migrant crisis should be resolved.
His stand elicited strong criticism from opposition parties who called it selfish and inhumane. Even his coalition partner, acting foreign minister Jan Hamáček from the Social Democrats, said a country of 10 million should be able to accommodate 50 orphans.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has come under fire on the domestic
scene for refusing to take in a group of 50 Syrian orphans. Babiš told the
daily Právo he saw no reason why the country should help Syrian orphans
when it had orphans of its own to look after.
He said the Czech Republic was showing sufficient solidarity with the countries of migrant origin by sending them money, doctors and experts.
Acting foreign minister Jan Hamáček of the Social Democrats countered that a country of 10 million could surely be able to cope with 50 Syrian orphans.
Opposition politicians from TOP 09, the Christian Democratic Party and Mayors and Independents said the prime minister’s statement was shameful and inhumane.
The regional court in Tachov has revealed details of the verdict in the
case of a 26-year-old woman charged with hate speech against a mixed class
The woman, who was found guilty of inciting racial hatred on social networks was handed a suspended sentence and fined 20,000 crowns. The verdict may still be appealed.
The woman commented on a class photo of largely Romany, Arab and Vietnamese first-graders in a local school, saying they should all be shot. The incident caused public outrage and the school was given special police protection.
On Monday, the minister of labour and social affairs called for a wide-ranging interdepartmental effort to sort out the issue of rogue landlords preying on families living in socially excluded localities. A list of 15 specific measures will act as a common thread in the preparation of a series of government proposals aimed at limiting the poverty trade business.
A 26-year-old woman has been found guilty of hate speech on social networks
in connection with hateful comments which appeared under a class photo of
first-graders in a school in Teplice, published in a regional daily just
over a year ago.
Reacting to the mix of Czech, Romany, Vietnamese and Arab children in the group photo, the woman wrote they should all be shot.
Details of the verdict have not yet been released, since all parties involved first need to be informed about it in writing.
Whether it was in the show trials of the 1950s or reporting from the Middle East, an undercurrent of anti-Semitism was present in the communist propaganda apparatus in Czechoslovakia. At least that is what a new website aimed at teachers in secondary schools and just released by the Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes reveals.