Sudeten German leader calls on Czechs to resolve issues with German minority

21-11-2000

The issue of the Benes Decrees, which led to the expulsion of up to three million ethnic Germans from former Czechoslovakia after the Second World War, remains controversial and is a frequent topic in both the Czech and German press. The fact, however, that there are anywhere up to sixty thousand ethnic Germans living in the Czech Republic today is rarely mentioned by either side. On Monday, the leader of a Sudeten organisation in Germany, Bernd Posselt, called on the Czech government to resolve outstanding issues with the German minority in the Czech Republic, especially that of property confiscated by the Czechoslovak government both in 1945 and in 1948 after the communist takeover. According to Mr. Posselt, the Czech government deals with the German minority like second-class citizens, and warned that although the Czechs may not perceive this as a problem, the European Union is watching. Earlier, Nick Carey spoke to Rostislav Cerny, who runs a radio service for ethnic Germans in the Czech Republic, and asked him first what he thought of the claim that ethnic Germans are treated as second-class citizens:

21-11-2000