Czech Government condemns vandals for painting Nazi symbols around Prague
At a cabinet session Thursday the Czech Government condemned those responsible for the vituperative graffiti that appeared at several locations in Prague last weekend. The perpetrators drew predominantly Nazi symbols on various buildings.
Czech Culture Minister Daniel Herman (Christian Democrats - KDU-ČSL) told journalists that ministers would be following the case and that he believes it is "important to make a very strict statement" about any such displays of extremism. He reminded them that villages had been burned to the ground beneath those same Nazi symbols.
Police are currently investigating seven such cases and are searching for the culprits. Herman expressed his appreciation for the fact that police have expanded their investigation to include not just suspicion of felony property damage by means of graffiti and inciting hatred against a group or inciting the restriction of a group's rights and freedoms, but also suspicion of felony displays of sympathy for a movement aimed at suppressing human rights and freedoms.
The vandal apparently chose places to attack according to the attitudes expressed by business owners promoting the "Hate Free" slogan of tolerance for minorities and refugees. Last Monday more than 1 000 people assembled on Prague's Jiřího z Poděbrad Square to express their support for that slogan.
In addition to several cafés, some shops and the underpass for the Karlovo náměstí metro station were spray-painted. Aneta Řehková, spokesperson for the Prague Transit Authority, estimated the cost of removing the graffiti at CZK 4 100 (EUR 150).
She also said CCTV cameras did not capture footage of the perpetrators at work. Should those responsible be apprehended, charged, tried and convicted, they face up to three years in prison.
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