Tuesday, 18 December 2018

FinMin's opponents warn of his creeping freedom restriction

ČTK |
26 February 2016

Prague, Feb 25 (CTK) - On Thursday, opponents of the Czech Finance Minister and ANO movement head, Andrej Babis, warned of his creeping restricting of freedom and concentration of power and pointed out that the communists used similar methods when seizing power in Czechoslovakia 68 years ago.

The rally in Wenceslas Square in Prague centre, called The Knell Tolls for Oligarchs, was mainly supported by politicians from the opposition conservative TOP 09.

"We will not lose freedom overnight, it is coming in stages. We may experience it for a second time," TOP 09 chairman Miroslav Kalousek said, referring to February 25, 1948, when the Communists seized power.

He mentioned Babis's laws, such as the electronic registration of sales (EET), which has made it through the Chamber of Deputies and which is yet to be passed by the Senate and signed by President Milos Zeman.

Kalousek said thanks to the law, the state will be collecting more and more data on citizens.

TOP 09 honorary chairman Karel Schwarzenberg said freedom must be fought for every day.

Participants in the rally, of whom there were some 100, criticised the fact that Babis owns Agrofert Holding and at the same time is a deputy prime minister and finance minister.

They also pointed to the fact that Babis was charged with cooperation with the Communist secret service StB in Slovakia.

A Slovak court decided he was listed in the StB files unrightfully.

Kalousek and Schwarzenberg again criticised the agreement between Prague and Beijing that the Prague assembly approved on Thursday and that binds the capital to recognise one China and which says Taiwan is a part of it.

The demonstration was one of a number of events held on the day of the Communist coup on February 25, 1948. The totalitarian regime was ended only by the revolution at the end of 1989.

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