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November 18, 2019
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Czech terrorist allegedly a fanatical supporter of ultra-right party who has attacked Romani people in the past

4.3.2018 6:54
French nationalist right-wing politician Marine Le Pen (left), chair of the Czech Republic's
French nationalist right-wing politician Marine Le Pen (left), chair of the Czech Republic's "Freedom and Direct Democracy" movement, Tomio Okamura (center), and the chair of the Dutch Freedom Party, Geert Wilders (right) at the "Europe of Nations and Freedom" conference in Prague, Czech Republic, 16 December 2017.

A 70-year-old pensioner from Bakov nad Jizerou has been charged by the Czech Police with committing terrorist attacks against trains. He attempted to make the incidents seem like the work of Islamic radicals, but he himself is said to have been a fanatical supporter of the "Freedom and Direct Democracy" (SPD) movement of Czech MP Tomio Okamura.

Before more recently aiming his hatred against Muslim refugees the pensioner had verbally attacked Romani people. News server Aktuálně.cz reported the news on 2 March after tracking down the identity of the man charged with the terrorist attacks.

According to that news server, pensioner J. B., who now faces life in prison, is described by locals as having been a neighbor who never caused trouble but who, in recent months, appeared to be a fanatical supporter of "Freedom and Direct Democracy", a movement that has based its election campaigns on anti-Islam slogans. Prior to the autumn elections to the lower house, J. B. drew attention to himself through his striking support for the SPD and for Okamura himself, whose image he displayed on his car and home.

"It was like getting punched in the eye whenever that green car with Okamura on the doors drove past. He was really on fire for him," Radim Šimáně, the Mayor of Bakov nad Jizerou, described J.B.

"He was the only person around here who made it clear whom he would support in the elections," the mayor said. Before J.B. is said to have begun screaming about Muslim migrants, he had publicly attacked Romani people.

"When I was a local assembly member, he got onto the local radio and began to announce that 'gypsies are vermin'. I had to explain to the mayor what happened," a former assembly member who did not wish to be named recalled for news server Aktuálně.cz.

J. B., according to the former assembly member and other residents of Bakov nad Jizerou, also accused unidentified Romani people of having robbed him more than once and of having poisoned his dog, but locals believe all of those accusations were fabricated stories. The arrest of the pensioner was reported by news server Lidovky.cz as having been on charges of causing two train crashes by cutting down trees so they would fall across the tracks.

The first accident happened on 1 June 2017 on the line between Bakov nad Jizerou and Mladá Boleslav, and passions about it were first sparked when Martin Konvička, an anti-Islamic activist, reported on Facebook that messages in Arabic had been found at the scene. The Czech Police later confirmed that rumor.

A piece of paper with an incorrectly spelled inscription of "Allah is great" on it had been found at the scene of the accident. The "Citizens' Rights Party", which is associated with Czech President Zeman, then attempted to exploit the incident for political gain.

The second train crash happened on 28 July on the line between Bělá pod Bezdězem and Bezděz. Fortunately nobody was physically injured during either incident.

ryz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Extremism, Hate, Svoboda a přímá demokracie (SPD), terrorism



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