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June 14, 2021

 

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Local Communist Party cell in Czech Republic posts antigypsyist defamation to official website, party apologizes

4.6.2021 6:59
The logo of the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia and the headline from an article published online by a local cell in 2021:
The logo of the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia and the headline from an article published online by a local cell in 2021: "Government Approves Plan for the Integration of Cikáni" [Gypsies]

Until 2 June, the official website of the District Committee of the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia (KSČM) in Frýdek-Místek, Czech Republic, which is linked to the national party's main website, featured a racist post entitled "Government Approves Gypsy Integration Plan" (Vláda schválila plán integrace Cikánů) that was brought to the attention of news server Romea.cz by one of our readers. The piece, published on 24 May without listing an author or referencing any sources of information, reported on the approval of the Roma Strategy 2021-2030 and commented on it in an openly racist way.

The anonymous article featured the following defamatory allegations: "Cikáni - the slackers and parasites of the Czech nation", "Those who do honest work all their lives and pay taxes will have to allow a cíkán or cikánka who has never worked to cut in line ahead of them at the unemployment office?", or "Cikánské children (not all of them) sometimes ended up in 'special' classes because of their poor upbringing, their aggression, their lower intellect, being less able to grasp material and learn. That was not the fault of the majority society, but the historical 'nature' of cikánské children and especially the absolutely insufficient care and upbringing of them by their cikánský parents when they were of preschool age." 

The piece is likely to have first spread as a chain e-mail, because at the end the author calls on readers to "pass the message on", and its wording is obviously similar to the commentaries authored by the racist Jiří Maria Sieber, whose Facebook posts in that vein were once shared as an article in 2017 by the Parlamentní listy tabloid. Martin Kalous, administrator of the KSČM website, investigated the article at the request of news server Romea.cz. 

On 2 June, Kalous reported the following: "I've found out how things work at the Frýdek-Místek cell with the website. Unfortunately, many people have access to the site who do not know what should or should not be published there on behalf of the party."

"Almost all of those people are older and nobody checks on the site. That piece about Romani people goes far beyond the line of what is acceptable," Kalous told Romea.cz. 

"It was probably copied from a private website, because it could not have been published by the big news portals. The article has been deleted," Kalous informed Romea.cz. 

"On behalf of the KSČM we apologize and nothing of the sort will happen again," the website administrator said. News server Romea.cz also pointed out that the Frýdek-Místek cell's website also features hoaxes about the dangers of being vaccinated against COVID-19 or the disinfomation that the COVID-19 virus is disseminated through 5G networks. 

"The lady who uploaded that and published disinformation about vaccines has been thoroughly warned not to do that again and she no longer has access to the website," Kalous told Romea.cz. As of the evening of 2 June, those articles were still accessible both on the website and on the Facebook page of the Frýdek-Místek Communist Party cell. 
 

bau, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Dezinformace, Hoax, KSČM, omluva



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