Prague, Jan 11 (CTK) – The Facebook company yesterday blocked the page of the group “We Do Not Want Islam in the Czech Republic”, the group’s representatives said, protesting against what they call censorship and efforts to suppress criticism.
The group has been accused of extremism and xenophobia.
Its representatives have denied the allegations, arguing that they only reject Islam and fight for the freedom of speech.
Facebook already blocked the page last June.
“At that time, this was done on the basis of slanders and attacks by pro-Islam activists,” Bloc Against Islam chairman Martin Konvicka said in a press release.
“The page administrators managed to prove to Facebook that opposition to the ideology of Islam is not the same as fomenting hatred for individual believers,” Konvicka said.
This time, the situation may be more serious, Konvicka.
“All of us know about the calls by many European politicians, including German Chancellor (Angela) Merkel and Czech Interior Minister (Milan) Chovanec (Social Democrats, CSSD), for censorship of social networks,” Konvicka said.
The server Lidovky.cz has written that the measure may be connected with Konvicka’s prosecution. At the end of last year, the police accused him of incitement to hatred.
The administrators of the page in question have sent a message to their followers that they will communicate with them through reserve pages until the original one is renewed.
“Those believing that the cancellation of discussion platforms will silence the voices of civic protest are absolutely wrong,” Bloc Against Islam deputy chairman Petr Hampl said.
“Just like 25 years ago, one has to fight for freedom of speech,” he added.