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Czech Interior Minister meets with representatives of family of deceased Romani man

11.11.2016 16:49

Today at 13:00 a meeting was held between Czech Interior Minister Milan Chovanec (Czech Social Democratic Party - ČSSD) and Deputy Police Director Martin Vondrášek with the legal representatives and members of the Demeter family, whose son died under still-unexplained circumstances on 18 October in the Czech town of Žatec. The meeting with the minister was attended by Romani community members Martin Bajger, Jan Čonka, Vladimír Hamouz, Josef Stojka and Marcel Ščuka.

Speaking with news server, Mr Ščuka said: "The meeting was held with the Deputy Police Director and others. Both sides are aware of the tense nature of the situation, and we were promised, among other things, that the ministry will prepare a press release in which it states that it will take an objective interest in investigating this entire case. They assured us that they are working very carefully on the case. Some of the information we presented to the Deputy Police Director and the Interior Minister was new to them. We will prepare a report for the ministry in which we state the other misgivings that might arise. On the basis of that report, our next meeting will be planned to assess how far the investigation of the case has progressed."

Ščuka also said the greatest concern was that attention be paid to the questions raised by the approach taken by local police when intervening against the Romani man. The family and the larger community are concerned that such procedures not become customary practice.

brf, jal, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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