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September 17, 2019
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Czech town plans to demolish real estate rented to the socially vulnerable after altercation between long-term residents and newcomers

2.6.2019 7:42
Footage from the live broadcast by a Romani family in Dvorec (Bruntál district) whose home was surrounded during a protest on 6 April 2019 against their family members accused of committing violence. (PHOTO:  Facebook.com)
Footage from the live broadcast by a Romani family in Dvorec (Bruntál district) whose home was surrounded during a protest on 6 April 2019 against their family members accused of committing violence. (PHOTO: Facebook.com)

The municipality of Dvorce is planning to buy and demolish real estate currently being leased to socially vulnerable tenants. Local assembly members made the decision on 29 May and Mayor Jan Božovský then informed the Czech News Agency of the plan.

The properties at issue are two duplexes. The local assembly has responded to an incident from the beginning of April in which a group of newcomers allegedly assaulted a long-term resident.

The man who was attacked was hospitalized. Police have charged three people over the incident.

A petition calling for the municipality to address the problem was then signed by 700 people. About 400 of those who signed it were local residents.

News server Romea.cz previously reported on the incident HERE. "The assembly has reviewed the demands of that petition for the buildings currently being rented to socially vulnerable families to be bought and demolished. According to their resolution, the vice-mayor and I are meant to take the necessary steps to do so. We will now negotiate with the owner," the mayor said.

Božovský also believes the petition has artificially increased the asking price for the properties. "We will do our best to lower [the price]," he said.

The building where the problematic family was living in April has been rented to new occupants. "A Romani family from Dvorce is living there now whom we know and who are above reproach," the mayor said.

Božovský also said the municipality will consider how to make use of the plots of land should they manage to buy them. The incident at issue happened on 4 April.

A group of Romani people are alleged to have first argued with a local man and then assaulted him in his garden. Three men have been charged.

"Three persons have been accused of felony attempted aggravated grievous bodily harm and the offense of breaking and entering," Pavla Jiroušková, spokesperson for the Bruntál Police, said previously. Each side of the conflict describes what caused it differently.

The Romani family whose members have been charged allege that the non-Romani man addressed them with racist insults, while the injured party said the assailants provoked the conflict by making threats. Several days after the attack about 150 people demonstrated against the family whose members are believed to have injured their neighbor.

Local Romani long-term residents joined that protest as well. Residents planned another protest for the following week and planned to deliver their petition to the municipal leadership during it.

Protest organizers then backed away from that plan. Right-wing extremists had begun to actively take an interest in the situation in Dvorce and those protesting presumably did not want the situation to escalate.

ČTK, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Kriminalita, Soužití, Stěhování, Ubytování



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