Czech Republic: Ultra-right marches tomorrow in Ústí, Romea.cz will report online in real time
Extraordinary security measures are being undertaken for an assembly followed by a march which has been convened for 1 May in the center of Ústí nad Labem by the right-wing extremist Workers' Social Justice Party (Dělnická strana sociální spravedlnosti - DSSS). Police estimate that around 500 supporters of the DSSS might come to Ústí for the march.
Those opposed to right-wing extremism are planning a blockade of the march and organizing other events. News server Romea.cz will, as is traditional, follow the day's events in real time through its online reporting.
"We are preparing to provide online reporting from 1 May in Ústí just as we have reported on all of the neo-Nazi and other right-wing extremist actions. We do this as part of our ongoing effort to objectively inform the public about this issue. Most of the Czech media report only about the neo-Nazis and their violence, but we also report in more detail about the counter-actions organized by those who abhor right-wing extremism. Our reporting tomorrow from Ústí will include that perspective as well," said Zdeněk Ryšavý, director of the ROMEA organization.
Anti-racists have prepared several events for tomorrow under the slogans "I want a society without violence - That's why I'm going to Ústí on 1 May 2014!" and "Nazi marches on the streets of our towns are unacceptable to us!" On Wednesday 23 April there was a discussion of the upcoming marches at the Mumie club in Ústí nad Labem entitled "1 May 2014: What is to be done about the Nazi march in Ústí?"
The Konexe group says it will be providing direct support on 1 May in Ústí nad Labem "to Romani families living closest to the route of the Nazi march and convening a peaceful assembly in the Předlice quarter together with Romani residents from the Ústí nad Labem region." In the Mánesový sady park, which is also near the march route, supporters of the Green Party and the local PRO Ústí ("For Ústí") political party will also gather.
Other groups "plan to completely block the Nazi march". "We will not allow a repeat of what happened here in 1939" the founder of the Blokáda Ústí (Blockade Ústí) Facebook page has posted.
The People in Need organization is planning a 1 May celebration in the Předlice quarter as well. "At the time of the march they will prepare fun and games as well as workshops for local residents. We will focus mainly on Předlice and the club in Matiční Street. We want to enjoy this day, not be props in a march," said Vít Kučera, director of the Ústí nad Labem branch of People in Need.
Backers of the anti-fascist activists are traveling to Ústí nad Labem from as far away as Brno to support them. Several electoral rallies will take place in the town as well.
The route of the DSSS march is planned to pass through several streets that lead into the Předlice quarter, which is predominantly inhabited by Romani people. The Konexe group has reserved streets there for its own assembly in order to prevent local residents from being targeted by right-wing extremists.
"We want to protect the local people and provide them with support," Miroslav Brož of Konexe said previously. The group has designed a program to take place at one of the troubled residential hotels on Sklářská Street.
Konexe volunteers will also be posted near other residential hotels located just a few hundred meters away from the march route. Police believe right-wing extremists will be heading to Ústí nad Labem in large numbers because the Workers' Youth (Dělnická mládež - DM) organization cancelled its own action for 1 May in Brno.
It is possible that right-wing extremists will travel to Ústí nad Labem from all over the country, including football hooligans and other violent street fighters. The Facebook page of the DSSS event includes the timetables for trains from Ostrava and Pardubice, and the DSSS says it wants to take a charter bus of its supporters to the town.
Romana Macová, spokesperson for City Hall, said cars should not park along the DSSS march route. Police officers in the city center will direct traffic.
The mass transit authority will be using only buses instead of trolleybuses for 1 May, with several stops closed indefinitely starting at noon and their connections re-routed. Riot units from Liberec will be augmenting the Ústí Regional Police and a special riot unit of police from Prague will be in reserve, according to Regional Police Director Tomáš Lansfeld.
Police will have anti-conflict teams in the field, a helicopter, and mounted officers. Lansfeld would not reveal the exact number, saying only that "There will be hundreds of police officers."
Municipal police are also counting on their patrols being reinforced. "We will have about 80 people in the streets. We will consult their deployment with the state police," said Jan Novotný, Deputy Director of the municipal police.
The town hall of the central municipal department of Ústí nad Labem will have an official present at the DSSS assembly empowered to dissolve it should the law be broken during it. The last big right-wing extremist event in Ústí nad Labem took place in April 2009, when about 400 violent racists from the Czech Republic, Germany and Slovakia marched through the town.
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