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Czech town refuses to rename square after Havel

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Prostejov, South Moravia, July 17 (CTK) – The residents of Prostejov have refused to rename the Hlavackovo namesti square in its heart after former Czech president Vaclav Havel as 4,442 out of the 4,783 respondents in an online poll voted against the idea, Deputy Mayor Jiri Pospisil told CTK Friday.
The petition for the renaming of the square to Vaclav Havel square was signed by roughly 300 people.
The town hall then staged an online poll in which most of the respondents voted against it.
“Some people simply do not consider the renaming of any square or street in Prostejov a good idea,” Pospisil said.
“They are mostly opposed to having to change all the relevant documents and agreements and they are afraid of the ensuing complications for the people living or conducting business in the locality,” he added.
Besides, 30,000 crowns would have to be paid for the licence fee demanded for such an act by the Vaclav Havel Library and the Vision 97 Foundation of Dagmar Havlova and Vaclav Havel.
A number of public areas, including the international airport in Prague, have been renamed after Havel since his death in 2011.
Havel, playwright, thinker and dissident, was the last Czechoslovak and the first Czech president (1989-2003). After he left the post, he primarily focused on the promotion of human rights in the world. He died at the age of 75 years on December 18, 2011.
A street bearing Havel’s name is in Gdansk. “Havel’s Places” have been installed in Washington, Dublin, Barcelona, Oxford, Prague and three other Czech towns.
($1=24.946 crowns)

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