No incident during neo-Nazi demonstration in support of Zündel
15:14 - 28.10.2005

PRAGUE- Some 70 neo-Nazis called for the release of Ernst Zuendel, who denies the Holocaust, from German prison in front of the German Embassy today, police spokeswoman Eva Miklikova told CTK, adding that the protest ended after a few hours without any incident.

The police separated the protesters from a 150-strong group of neo-Nazism opponents who gathered outside the embassy building as well, Miklikova said.

The police did not intervene, but they detained two persons suspected of supporting and promoting movements aiming to suppress people's right and freedoms, Miklikova said.

"Nothing but lies. Learn to read," anti-Nazi activists chanted over the heads of police guards at the ultra-right protesters listening to their leaders' speeches.

The activists' meeting, initiated by the Tolerance and Civic Society Association, was attended by several well-known personalities, including MPs Tatana Fischerova, Svatopluk Karasek, Karel Schwarzenberg (all for Freedom Union, US-DEU) and Jaromir Stetina (for Greens).

Senator Stetina told CTK that the police should intervene in his opinion, under the law banning public denial of the crimes of Nazism and communism.

Miklikova said that officials from the Prague Municipal Hall had also been present, and they could have asked the police to intervene if they had considered it necessary.

The Jewish Communities' Federation, the Czech Council for Victims of Nazism and the Association of Liberated Political Prisoners criticised the planned neo-Nazi demonstration earlier this week.

The Prague Municipal Hall, however, said it cannot ban any event unless it arouses a clear suspicion that a criminal act would happen during it.

As the hall had not banned the demonstration, the police had no means to justify their possible intervention, Miklikova said.

"The meeting was quite calm today," she added.

Zündel, 66, who lives in Toronto, Canada, has been accused of spreading hatred towards Jews through the Internet. He repeatedly denied the Holocaust, which is a crime in Germany. Canadian police handed him to their German colleagues this spring.

Some time ago, Zündel spent two years in a Toronto prison. He emigrated to Canada in 1958 and the Canadian authorities have repeatedly rejected his requests for citizenship.
 

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