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December 7, 2021



Graffiti celebrating the Vítkov arsonists appears in Ostrava

Ostrava, 18.6.2010 14:25, (ROMEA)

Yesterday graffiti celebrating the perpetrators of the Vítkov arson attack was found at the Bazaly stadium in Ostrava. Czech Radio reports that an unknown author spray-painted the phrase “Long live the heroes of Vítkov” on a wall there, signing the message with a three-legged swastika symbolizing modern racism.

The Baník Ostrava football club filed criminal charges against an unidentified perpetrator and had the graffiti immediately removed. The damage caused to the property by the graffiti is estimated at CZK 2 000. For the time being, police are investigating the case as one of vandalism, for which the perpetrator could face up to a year in prison. “Given the specificity of the graffiti, detectives specializing in extremism have also begun an investigation,” news server Dení quoted Ostrava police spokesperson Gabriela Holčáková as saying.

Igor Bruzl of the Baník management rejects the idea of a connection between his club’s fans and promoters of the extreme right. “There are not that many representatives of extremist movements among the Baník fans. Naturally we have our problems, but I do not believe Baník fans should be linked to this,” he told Czech Radio.

The graffiti appeared on the stadium walls at the same time as the nearby Regional Court in Ostrava has been trying the four extremists who attacked a Roma home with Molotov cocktails last April in Vítkov. During the subsequent blaze, the most serious injuries were sustained by the infant Natálka, who was not yet two years old at the time.

Ladislav Baláž, attorney-in-fact for the victimized Roma family, told Czech Radio that extremists have sent a clear message to the defendants through the graffiti, especially to those who have refused to testify. The youths face the possibility of exceptional sentencing, including life in prison, should they be convicted of attempted racially motivated murder.

Gwendolyn Albert, Zdeněk Ryšavý, ryz, Dení, Czech Radio, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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