The Canadian Embassy in Prague is busy making plans for a possible visit by the country’s governor general. Michaëlle Jean is due to visit the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Slovenia in early November, although officials stress the trip has yet to be confirmed. One stop on her proposed Czech itinerary is the Museum of Romani Culture in Brno, incidentally at a time when increasing numbers of Romanies are once again applying for asylum in Canada. Radio Prague spoke to Canadian Ambassador Michael Calcott:
The Vietnamese make up one of the largest ethnic minorities in this country, many of them running clothes markets and more recently grocery stores in Czech towns and cities. According to the statistics there are just over 55,000 Vietnamese living in the Czech Republic, and by all accounts it’s a very harmonious relationship – Vietnamese are regarded by Czechs as hard-working, law-abiding and possessing a high regard for education, even if it’s a community that keeps very much to itself.
The government council on Romany affairs is planning to discuss in two weeks’ time the controversial issue of the high number of Czech Romanies seeking asylum in Canada, the minister for human rights and minorities, Džamila Stehlíková, told reporters on Saturday. The prime minister, Mirek Topolánek, said last week economic factors not human rights were behind an increase in Czech asylum applications in Canada. Romany leader Ladislav Bilý criticised the prime minister’s comments, as well as statements made by Minister Stehlíková and Interior Minister Ivan Langer. Nearly 500 Czech Romanies have applied for asylum in Canada since it dropped visa requirements for Czechs in November; Ottawa had introduced the restriction in response to a large influx of Czech Romanies in the late 1990s.
The Czech police organised crime unit has revealed in its annual report a rise in neo-Nazi group activities in the Czech Republic, with members of the extreme right organising a an increasing number of demonstrations and concerts or rallies. Last year, the police unit noted in its report, far-right groups held 26 different events. Specialists say that extremists have tried to raise their profile to try and broaden their influence and strengthen their support base. Experts have also noted that the far-right in the Czech Republic has also been trying to prepare the ground for eventual entry onto the political scene.
Around 300 neo-Nazis gathered in the eastern city of Hradec Králové on Saturday, holding a brief demonstration in one of the city squares before dispersing. They had hoped to attend what had been dubbed a “political cultural” event in the Hradec’s outdoor cinema, but in the end the city council banned it.
Nearly 300 neo-Nazi supporters gathered in the East Bohemian town of Hradec Králové on Saturday. The gathering, which has been announced as Freedom Day, was scheduled to coincide with the death of one of Hitler’s closest aides and associates Rudolf Hesse. The town hall on Friday cancelled a contract for the lease of the open-air cinema where the gathering was originally to take place. However, the neo-Nazi sympathisers gathered in the centre despite not having received a permit. Authorities said the event could only be stopped in case the demonstrators broke the law.
The Hradec Králové town hall has moved to prevent a neo-Nazi gathering over the weekend. The town hall on Friday cancelled a contract for the lease of the open-air cinema where the gathering was to take place. The organizers are to receive financial compensation for the last minute cancellation. Meanwhile, police in the East Bohemian town of Hradec Králové have been bracing for the gathering which was to have been attended by several hundred neo-Nazis from around the Czech Republic and abroad. The gathering was scheduled to coincide with the death of one of Hitler’s closest aides and associates Rudolf Hesse.
The city of Hradec Králové in Eastern Bohemia is battening down the hatches this weekend as it could become the latest venue for a gathering by hundreds of neo-Nazis. A group called the Worker’s Party has booked the city’s outdoor cinema for an event dubbed Freedom Day, but observers are convinced the event is a cover for a rally by hard-core neo-Nazi groups.
A meeting of neo-Nazis is scheduled to take place in the east Bohemian town of Hradec Králové on Saturday, marking the death of Rudolf Hesse. Around 300 to 400 people are expected to gather at the Hradec Králové train station to attend a concert and a political meeting. The exact location of the event has not been specified. The police are expected to be out in force for the event.
Czech neo-Nazis are planning to hold their biggest ever gathering on
Lidové noviny reported. One of its organisers told the newspaper they
expecting five to six thousand people to attend a so-called
“musical-political afternoon”, at an as yet undisclosed location in
east Bohemia. The date of the planned event is the anniversary of the
of leading Nazi Rudolf Hess.
Experts on extremism have told the Czech Press Agency they believe the Czech far right is planning to try to enter politics at the national level. The neo-Nazis long-term strategy involves a concerted effort to not break the law in order to gain broader support with an eye to eventually entering Parliament, a member of the Czech Helsinki Committee said. The Interior Ministry recently said it would put more energy into monitoring far-right groups.
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