Czech Republic: Third person charged in anti-Roma protests, more violence expected this coming Saturday
A third person has been charged in connection with the recent anti-Romani protests in České Budějovice. Detectives say the 20-year-old man assaulted a police officer on Saturday, 6 July with a glass bottle and is suspected of committing violence against a public official.
Police say the law was also broken by the person who convened the first assembly on 29 June when he called on those participating to march on the Máj housing estate, a plan that was not announced to authorities in advance. He is said to have broken the Law on Assembly and his behavior will be addressed by the Administrative Committee of the municipality, according to police spokesperson Jiří Matzner.
Yesterday detectives announced they had filed their first two charges against participants in the assemblies. One is said to have thrown rocks at police officers, the other to have assaulted them.
As for the third person charged, Matzner said that „In the event of conviction he faces a punishment of up to six years in prison.“ The officer targeted was wearing a helmet and was therefore not injured.
Clashes and conflicts are expected this coming Saturday in České Budějovice as well. A demonstration and march through town to the Máj housing estate has been announced for 14:00 CET there.
Several street brawls have taken place at the Máj housing estate recently. On 21 June some children got into a conflict at a playground which was subsequently joined by approximately 100 adults. Police intervened at the scene.
In response to that conflict, a demonstration was held on 29 June. After it was over, several hundred demonstrators headed for the housing estate and clashed with police there.
Last Saturday, 6 July, police intervened at the housing estate against yet another anti-Roma demonstration that was not announced to authorities. Romani residents of the housing estate have announced to authorities that they will be meeting on the streets of the estate every Saturday until the end of September to convene their own „happenings“.
Hundreds of police officers were waiting at the scene for the violent demonstrators last Saturday. More police patrols than usual have also remained at the housing estate for several days.
Der Musiker Martina Hůla (alias Bonus) fasst in seinem neuen Musikstück die aktuellen Ereignisse in České Budějovice zusammen und bezieht damit eindeutig Stellung. Dokumentiert bei romea.cz: http://www.romea.cz/cz/kultura/video-bonus-reaguje-na-protiromske-pochody-poveste-ho-vejs-at-se-houpa-ze-tu-byl-nezvanej-host