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Právo: Panicked Czechs tipping police about false refugees

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Prague, Sept 16 (CTK) – Reports about the refugees flocking to the Czech Republic are spreading a panic due to which Czechs are increasingly tipping the police about false refugees roaming the country, daily Pravo writes yesterday.
Some Czechs have told the police that the refugees are in potatoes fields or building a bunker, Pravo writes.
However, these are mostly migrant workers from EU countries, it adds.
“We have checked a number of such tips, especially in connection with migrant workers from Romania or Bulgaria. They were working on vineyards and in the fields during the summer,” South Moravia police spokeswoman Petra Ledabylova has told the paper.
“The other day, we were tipped that ‘refugees are sitting in a field, having potatoes for lunch’. We came to the place and there were migrant workers from Romania,” Ledabylova said.
On September 10, a similar case occurred in Nove Straseci, central Bohemia. An anonymous phoned the police, saying that a group of refugees was at a bus stop. Due to the large number of the persons in question, two police patrols were sent there, Pravo writes.
“It eventually turned out that these were 24 employees from Slovakia who came to pick hops to the region,” a local police officer has told the paper.
The dark colour of skin has caused that three footballers playing for the Mlada Boleslav first league club were mistaken for refugees, Pravo writes.
“The locals were scared. As there was a great deal of information about the refugees, they simply linked it with the black players,” a local police commander has told the paper.
A similar incident occurred in Uherske Hradiste, south Moravia, in late June. The police detained an 11-member group of foreigners without passports after being warned that there are refugees, Pravo writes.
However, the investigation showed that this was a folklore group from Benin invited for a performance at a folklore festival, it adds.
A man from the Chrudim region, east Bohemia, claimed that he can recognise a migrant with certainty because he lived for a number of years in Britain, Pravo writes.
He told the police he had seen three refugees building a bunker in a forest, it adds.
“A police patrol left for the forest, finding out that these were forest workers who were cutting the branches and throwing them on a heap,” the regional police spokeswoman has said.
On September 14, a girl from the Plzen region, west Bohemia, told the police that when going to school she had seen a dark-skinned man wearing a black overall and carrying a rifle, Pravo writes.
“The police immediately went to the place. Locals’ testimonies revealed that the man was a chimney-sweeper with his tools,” it adds.
The panic has also spread online. A hoax appeared on Facebook, claiming that Islamisation has reached the Czech Republic.
Referring to the “reliable sources from the Education Ministry,” it said that Czech first graders would have to learn compulsorily Arabic numerals as of this year.
The seemingly innocent joke was widely misunderstood and provoked a stormy reaction. Some Internet users only hours later grasped that Europe has been using Arabic numerals for centuries, Pravo writes.

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