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Hundred demonstrators express solidarity with refugees in Prague

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Prague, July 18 (CTK) – Over a hundred people gathered at Prague’s Wenceslas Square this afternoon to express solidarity with refugees and protest against the spreading of hatred.
“Our goal is to express solidarity with the refugees and stand up against xenophobic moods that prevail in the Czech society now,” the meeting’s organiser, Romana Cervenkova, told CTK.
“The meeting is mainly held in reaction to July 1, when gallows appeared here, which the police eventually did not assess as a crime,” Cervenkova said.
She referred to an anti-migration demonstration where some participants carried gallows. The police did not intervene and later they concluded that this was no mistake.
The organisers of the meeting Saturday wore greenish reflex jackets decorated with suns, and distributed badges reading Refugees Welcome.
The participants carried banners reading “We Don’t Want Hatred in the Czech Republic,” “Ban Wars, Not People” and others.
Addressing the crowd, Cervenkova said refugees are human beings who need help.
“We should step down from our comfort and provide help, a little bit at least. We could not be proud of ourselves otherwise. Let alone that 1500 [refugees] means no burden for the Czechs,” Cervenkova said.
Earlier this month, the centre-left cabinet decided that Prague will accept 1500 refugees by the end of 2017. The first of them may arrive in September, and a total of 400 by the end of 2015.
Churches will help select the refugees to be accepted.
The pro-refugee demonstration will culminate with a pop concert at the nearby Karlovo namesti square, organised by the Stop Hatred group.
Later Saturday, another two demonstrations are to be held in Wenceslas Square, both aimed against immigrants.
The participants of one are to walk to Prague Castle, the seat of the president. The other demonstration, convoked by the extremist National Democracy grouping, plans to walk to the government seat elsewhere in the centre of Prague.

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