Neo-Nazi concerts and gatherings of right-wing extremists, as in other parts of Europe, are not uncommon in the Czech Republic, and in the past Czech police have been criticised for not doing enough to prevent such events. But in the last few years, say authorities, the situation has improved. According to statistics by the country's organised crime unit, the number of racist concerts has dropped, one reason why officials were somewhat taken aback by a recent report by the UN. The UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination suggested
An employer who refused to offer Mr. Pavel Sarissky a job, on the grounds of his ethnicity, has been ordered to apologise and fined 50 thousand CZK (2,500 USD) by a Prague court. Ms. Nada Mihailova, the owner of IMAGE-n-west, was found guilty of racist discrimination against Mr. Sarissky, and ordered to pay damages. When Pavel Sarissky applied for a job in her firm in 2005, she rejected his application - telling the employment bureau that it was because he was unwilling to work nights. Mr. Sarissky refuted the allegations, producing a reference from his previous employer as evidence. Ms. Mihailova responded to this by telling Mr. Sarissky that she 'just didn't employ Romanies'. According to the European Monitoring Centre in Vienna, discrimination against the Roma minority in the Czech Republic is widespread, though this is only one of a couple of cases of discrimination in the workplace to have made it to Czech courts.
Prague Town Hall has decided to ban a planned neo-Nazi march through Prague's Jewish quarter; it was originally announced to take place on the 10th of November. That date marks the anniversary of Kristallnacht, the Nazi pogrom against Jews that took place in Germany in 1938. Town Hall officials have said such a march would promote hatred and intolerance towards citizens on the basis of religion or ethnicity. The march was previously given permission as it was officially put forward as a protest against the Czech mission in Iraq. Organizers of the march said earlier this week they planned to postpone the event until November 17th; but the site on that date has already been booked by the Jewish Liberal Union.
The Prague Town Hall has not allowed the neo-Nazi march through Prague's
Jewish quarter which was announced to take place on 17th November, because
the date and the venue has been already booked by the Jewish Liberal Union.
The neo-Nazis would have to choose a different route for their march.
The march was originally scheduled to take place on 10th November. That day marks the anniversary of the Kristallnacht, the Nazi-inspired pogrom on Jews that took place in Germany and Austria in 1938. It has been granted permission by Prague City Hall, whose officials claimed they couldn't ban it as it was officially announced as a protest against the Czech mission in Iraq.
Around 200 far right activists gathered on Saturday afternoon in the town of Kladno in Central Bohemia to commemorate Friday's St. Wenceslas Day. Several dozen police officers accompanied the march to prevent clashes with members of various left-wing movements. One person was detained during the demonstration.
It may sound hard to believe, but a Czech neo-Nazi group has acquired a permit to hold a march through Prague's historic Jewish quarter. What's really incredible is the date the far-right group's demonstration is set to take place: the anniversary of the notorious Nazi pogrom known as Kristallnacht. And to cap it all, the Prague Town Hall seems to have no legal means of stopping the march.
Czech neo-Nazis are planning to march through Josefov, the Prague Jewish Quarter, on 10th November. That day marks the 69th anniversary of the Kristallnacht, the Nazi-inspired pogrom on Jews throughout Germany and Austria that took place in November 1938. According to the daily Hospodarske noviny, the march has been granted permission by Prague City Hall whose officials claim that they could not ban the march as it was officially announced as a protest against the Czech mission in Iraq.
The number of Vietnamese applicants for Czech visas has more than tripled since 2000; in fact, more than 8,000 Vietnamese citizens applied for both long- and short-term visas for the Czech Republic last year. However, the Czech embassy in Vietnam has come under criticism. Critics say the consular service at the Czech Embassy in Hanoi is not coping with the large numbers of visa applicants; allegations that staff at the embassy are corrupt have been refuted.
The government has announced plans to found an agency aimed at fighting discrimination and social exclusion of minorities, especially the Roma, in Czech towns. The announcement was made by Dzamila Stehlikova - the minister responsible for human rights - on Tuesday. The plan has also been approved by the government Council for Romany Affairs. One report estimates there are some three hundred neighbourhoods in the country (although activists say there are many more) where some inhabitants live in unsuitable conditions. In the pilot phase of the project
Jehan Harney is a journalist and filmmaker of Egyptian-American extraction. Over the last year, she has lived in Prague and taught journalism at the city's New Anglo-American College. During her time in the Czech Republic, Mrs. Harney developed an interest in the issues surrounding the enforced sterilization of Romany women. Subsequently, she made a documentary on just that theme, titled 'Sterile Dreams'. Jehan Harney is now back in the United States, but I caught up with her just before she left to ask her why she decided to make such a film:
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