Prague, April 9 (CTK) – The Czech government might agree on a solution to the purchase of a pig farm in Lety near Pisek, south Bohemia, which stands on the site of a wartime concentration camp for Romanies, Human Rights and Legislation Minister Jan Chvojka said on Prima commercial television yesterday.
Chvojka (Social Democrats, CSSD) said he believes that the government will succeed in settling the issue by the end of its term, or after the October general election.
He repeated that an expert opinion on the value of the land and buildings as well as the technical equipment on the site should be ready by April 20.
“As soon as we know the value of the real estate, we will negotiate about the price with the company (AGPI which operates the pig farm) in May and it is possible that an agreement will be reached during June, that we will settle accounts with the firm and that the issue will be resolved,” Chvojka said.
He said the incumbent government stands closest to completing the negotiations about the purchase of the farm and its removal from the commemorative place.
Michal Kucera, chairman of the deputy group of the opposition conservative TOP 09 and Mayors and Independents (STAN), said the government promised to find a solution at the beginning of its term in early 2014 and that it has done anything for three years.
But he said he believes the government will find a solution by the end of its term.
The abolition of the farm has been demanded by some Romany organisations. The European Parliament and other international organisations have called on the Czech Republic several times to remove it from the commemorative place.
The camp in Lety was opened by the authorities of the Bohemia and Moravia Protectorate in August 1940 as a labour camp in August 1940. It was for men who could not prove having a source of their living. Nomads were also to be placed in it. A similar faclity existed in Hodonin u Kusntatu, south Moravia. In January 1942, both camps were turned into concentration ones and in August Gypsy camps were opened on both sites. From then until May 1943, 1308 Romanies passed through the Lety camp. They were men, women as well as children. Out of the total, 327 died in the camps and more than 500 Rmanies ended up in Oswiecim (Auschwitz). Fewer than 600 Romany prisoners returned from concentration camps after the war. The Nazis murdered an estimated 90 percent of Czech Romanies.