Prague, Aug 18 (CTK) – Thirty Muslims, Christians, Jews and members of various minorities met at a joint breakfast in Prague yesterday to show that people with different roots, religion and culture can understand each other, the event’s coordinator Lukas Houdek told the media.
The meeting was held within the Hate Free Culture project that the government initiated in reaction to the recent sharp debate about migration and Islam in the Czech Republic.
“We wanted to react to the growing hysteria and show that we can meet each other and have a breakfast together even though each of us comes from different conditions,” Houdek said.
The meals were brought to the breakfast by the participants themselves, who included the ambassador of South Africa and Kuwait, among others.
Young Czech Muslims said they are unhappy about hateful attacks against immigrants and Islam that appear on social networks.
“The Czech Republic respects the value of freedom that enables everyone to say what they want, irrespective of whether their views are positive or negative. It is important to preserve this. However, it [people’s comments] should be decent,” said Ondrej Adamik, one of the Muslim representatives at the meeting, said.
Lenka Ahmed Balicka, a young woman wearing a Muslim scarf, said the worst hateful reactions appear on Facebook, while people react more mildly face to face with Muslims.
Nevertheless, hostile faces are no exception among the Czech majority population, Ahmed Balicka said.
She said the Czechs know little about Islam.
“They share the widespread opinion that every Arab is a Muslim and every Muslim is automatically an Arab,” Ahmed Balicka said.
She said it seems to her that the hostile atmosphere is starting to change slowly.
“The more tense the situation is, the more frequently I register people’s positive reactions…People are starting to change,” she said.
Adamik, too, said that the number of people who are really interested in Islam is growing.
In addition, “a conversion wave” is arising, he sa