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Czech Republic: Czech academics warn of growing xenophobia (Unofficial translation)

Over 740 Czech academics and other staff of scientific and research institutions have signed a petition entitled 'Academics against Fear and Indifference' in response to the increasingly xenophobic atmosphere in Czech society. The petition was posted online on 17 August.

According to the petition, immigrants are labelled as vermin or parasites flooding the Czech Republic in order to drain its welfare system and to murder and rape at will, while Muslims are being tarred with the same brush as terrorists irrespective of their real views.

Some ministers also supported the campain, among them Minister for Huma Rights Jiří Dientsber, Education Minister Kateřina Valachová, Minister of Justice Robert Pelikán and Vicepremier Pavel Bělobrádek.  On the other hand, the President’s spokesman Jiří Ovčáček criticised the appeal, saying that it merely served to deepen the gap between Czech society and “so-called elites”.

Czech government is preparing a campaign against xenophobia to tackle the resistance and fear felt by the Czech public in relation to the arrival of 1,500 refugees, who are to be relocated from Greece, Italy, Jordan and Kurdistan in following two years, Tomáš Prouza, Czech State Secretary for European Affairs informed.

Read more here (in English)...