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Police detain man suspected of attack on minister’s house

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Prague, June 30 (CTK) – The police have detained a 20-year-old Russian man who is suspected of having attacked the house of Defence Minister Martin Stropnicky with Molotov cocktails, police spokesman Tomas Hulan said on the police website Tuesday.

The court remanded the Russian man in custody on Monday to prevent his possible escape abroad, Hulan added.

The mam faces eight years in prison for general threat in the stage of attempt, if found guilty.

Detectives were investigating several suspects, including the foreigner, who temporarily lives in the Czech Republic.

As they did not find him at his place of residence, they launched a nation-wide search for him last Friday. He was detained at a demonstration in Brno on the same day, Hulan said.

Detectives were originally investigating the man in connection with another case. The police were directed to him by scent traces found on one of the bottles, Respekt weekly wrote.

It also wrote that the attack was preceded by threatening e-mails calling on Stropnicky to not take a critical stance on Russia. The man dismisses the accusation.

The attack occurred at around 4:00 on Sunday, June 7. According to the investigators, the man threw four bottles filled with a burning mixture at Stropnicky’s house.

Media wrote that the bottles fell on the house’s terrace, but they did not fully explode and the flames were extinguished in a few minutes.

Stropnicky was not at home, but there were three people in the house at the time of the attack.

Stropnicky refused to comment on the latest development of the case, the Defence Ministry said.

Stropnicky said previously that the attack must be related to his work as defence minister.

The case is investigated by both state and military police. Stropnicky’s guarding has been tightened since the attack.

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