Workers’ Party proceedings begin 11 January
The hearing of the proposal for the Supreme Administrative Court (Nejvyšší správní soud - NSS) to dissolve the Workers’ Party will begin before a special seven-member panel on 11 January. The Czech Government will be represented by attorney Tomáš Sokol. The party, which will be defended by its chair, Tomáš Vandas, has not submitted any special motions regarding evidence. ČTK reported today that Vandas will make use of background materials prepared by the party’s lawyers; he believes the government has once again failed to make the argument for dissolving the party. NSS spokesperson František Emmert said the court is not planning any special security measures.
This will be the second such motion regarding the Workers’ Party to be heard by the court. Last year the first motion was rejected by judges for lack of evidence. This time the government is submitting much more extensive background materials with dozens of pieces of evidence and expanded argumentation. For the time being, the proceedings are expected to take place during four sessions next Monday to Thursday. Emmert said it is not clear whether the verdict will be announced next Thursday.
"It is possible the panel will make a decision then. However, they might also postpone the announcement of the verdict. The proceedings were suspended for 14 days during the first discussion of the motion to dissolve the Workers’ Party,” Emmert recalled.
Vandas says Workers’ Party promoters will come to the court on Monday to show their support. "It’s to be expected that whoever has free time will come to watch. We are not, however, officially convening anything," Vandas said. Increased participation is expected on the day the decision will be announced. The court is not preparing any special security measures for the Workers’ Party proceedings. Police will see to maintaining order in front of the courthouse on Moravské náměstí.
The courtroom seats about 50. Journalists must reserve places; the NSS will offer those left over to the public. Last year the courtroom was mostly full of Workers’ Party promoters. Presiding judge Vojtěch Šimíček had to lecture them due to their loud demonstrations.
According to the government’s motion, the extreme-right Workers’ Party intentionally foments tension in society, systematically offends minorities, and poses a direct threat to democracy. The government says it is essential the party be dissolved, even if it does not enjoy great voter support for the time being. The government motion analyzes the party’s activity in detail, describing its undertakings and the careers and public demonstrations of its members and representatives.
The Workers’ Party claims the motion to dissolve it is based on untruths and has been put together for the sake of expediency. They believe the government has not succeeded in proving its claims about the connections between the party and neo-Nazis, nor about the danger the party allegedly poses to democracy. The party believes the NSS should reject the motion once again.
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