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August 16, 2022

 

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Czech politicians avoid anti-racist demos, but will new Justice Minister change that?

Prague, 3.3.2015 20:57, (ROMEA)
Robert Pelikán at a demonstration against neo-Nazism and racism on 12 March 2011 in the town of Nový Bydžov. The demonstration was dispersed by mounted police officers in a brutal way. (PHOTO:  Lukáš Houdek)
Robert Pelikán at a demonstration against neo-Nazism and racism on 12 March 2011 in the town of Nový Bydžov. The demonstration was dispersed by mounted police officers in a brutal way. (PHOTO: Lukáš Houdek)

He has participated in several anti-racist assemblies and demonstrations, and in September 2011 he was an initiator of the "Hate is No Solution" (Nenávist není řešení) platform. Yesterday Robert Pelikán became the interim Czech Justice Minister.  

It is possible that we will soon see the same image here in the Czech Republic as that of a recent demonstration against Pegida in Germany when German Justice Minister Heiko Maas joined those demonstrating in favor of an open society. Former Czech Justice Minister Helena Válková resigned yesterday and was replaced by Pelikán, who had been her first Deputy Minister.

Czech President Zeman will most probably appoint him Justice Minister next week. Pelikán has worked as legal counsel for several law firms.

He has represented, for example, Richard Frištenský, wcho stood up for homeless people and protected them against municipal police at Prague's Anděl metro stop in October 2012; he has also filed a criminal report against Mayor Pavel Louda of Nový Bydžov over his racist remarks about Romani people and represented the surviving children of Ľudovít Kašpar, who died as the result of two police officers intervening against him in Kynšperk nad Ohří. Pelikán has also worked on cases of illegal police interventions against antifascist blockades of neo-Nazi marches in the towns of Krupka and Nový Bydžov in 2011, the case of a racist attack by neo-Nazis on a citizen in Beroun in 2009, and the controversial shooting death of a Romani youth in Tanvald on New Year's Day 2012.      

Czech Human Rights Minister Jiří Dienstbier and Czech Labor and Social Affairs Minister Michaela Marksová-Tominová, are also exceptions in Czech politics. They are not afraid to publicly condemn intolerance and racism.

bau, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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advokát, ministr spravedlnosti, Politika, Robert Pelikán



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