Czech President: More police needed in areas of conflict
Speaking on Friday during a discussion with local residents in the town of Chomutov, Czech President Miloš Zeman said increasing the number of police officers could be a solution to situations in regions of conflict where non-Romani people are complaining about their co-existence with the Romani minority. Non-Romani locals have complained primarily about problems with crime in some parts of town and in nearby Jirkov which they attribute to Romani people
Last month outgoing Czech Interior Minister Martin Pecina promised to add 1 000 people to the police force starting next year. One-fifth of those are slated to serve in the Moravian-Silesian Region, and Zeman gave his opinion Friday on where it should be a priority to send the rest.
"I personally would recommend the most intensive enhancements to police forces in areas of conflict," the president said. In his view, such areas could be determined either by their demographics or by their high unemployment rates, as those are a factor in crime.
Zeman also mentioned the question of residential hotels, facilities that charge high rents for small spaces and few services, in the context of increased crime and social unrest. He believes the mistake lies in the law on the state housing benefit, which makes such businesses possible.
"Let's amend the law so it satisfies the adaptable and not the inadaptable citizens," the president said. He also mentioned that welfare should be reduced to the bare minimum for so-called "inadaptable" people.
Zeman went on to explain that by "inadaptable" people, he meant unemployed persons who reject offers of employment. The president was visiting Chomutov during a two-day stay in the Ústí Region, where he also held discussions with students at Ústí University and residents of Most before heading to Litoměřice.
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