Thursday, 19 October 2017

IntMin: Czech extremists' activity on the rise

ČTK |
28 January 2016

Prague, Jan 27 (CTK) - Extremists staged 323 events in the Czech Republic in 2015, which is 44 more than the year before and they mainly focused on migration, according to the latest report on extremism that the Interior Ministry's security policy section released yesterday.
Representatives of the ultra right and populists tried to attract new followers by abusing migration issues, the report says.
On the contrary, the number of extremist crimes decreased year-on-year by 26 to 175 in 2015.
According to data from quarterly reports on extremism, leftist extremists organised 144 events, rightist extremists 119 and populists held 60.
The speeches delivered at demonstrations did not much change throughout the whole year.
"The main mobilising topic was the migrant wave in all cases. The ultra right and populists entities considered it an opportunity to win over supporters," the Interior Ministry says in its report for the last quarter of 2015.
However, ultra-right followers also more and more expressed support for the policy of Russia and its President Vladimir Putin.
The report from the last quarter of 2015 points to the demonstration in support of President Milos Zeman held in Prague -Albertov on November 17, the national holiday marking the student protests against the Nazi occupation in 1939 and the Communist regime in 1989.
Some 2000 people took part in the rally, including representatives of foreign anti-immigration movements, such as Pegida from Dresden, Germany, and the English Defence League from Britain, which served as a role model for the platform We Do Not Want Islam in the Czech Republic, transformed into the current Bloc against Islam, as well as the paramilitary group Czechoslovak Reserve Soldiers. They also participated in the subsequent demonstration of National Democracy that resulted in a protest march to the Government Office and brawls with the police.
The role of the extremist Workers' Party of Social Justice (DSSS) continued to stagnate on the ultra-right scene. Its position was being assumed by National Democracy, the ministry said.
"National Democrats, as a relatively new Czech extra-parliamentary entity, have relied on their links to the extremist scene not being broadly known to the public yet," the report writes.
The neo-Nazi stream is also stagnating within the ultra-right wing and this part of the political spectrum is approaching populists. Exactly National Democracy stands for this trend.
The ultra-left scene is dominated by the anarchist movement that, on the contrary, focused on volunteering, public fund-rasing campaigns in aid to refugees and protests against their opponents.
Out of anti-Islam and anti-immigration groupings, the Block against Islam, closely cooperated with the Dawn-National Coalition party, played the most important role.
Last year, the police succeeded in clarifying 114 out of 175 extremist criminal cases. The most frequent crime in this group was support for and promotion of movements aiming to suppress human rights and freedoms (100 cases). A total of 154 perpetrators committed extremist crimes.
hol/dr/pv

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