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Civic Nation Unity in Deversity

Xenophobic Rhetoric

Xenophobic Rhetoric Tomio Okamura

In the monitoring period a number of xenophobic statements from Czech politicians were noted, which leads to the conclusion that populism and racist attitudes became an acceptable part of public discourse in the Czech Republic.

The leader in xenophobic discourse in 2013 was the leader of the political bloc “Usvít” (“Dawn of direct democracy”) Tomio Okamura. He repeatedly acted to limit the presence of foreigners in the country. His phrase “the Czech Republic does not need inadaptable foreigners or religious fanatics”, he said in an interview in April 2013. This became the main slogan of his party. According to him, foreign workers are taking away the jobs of Czech citizens and foreign (Ukrainian) mafia controls the market of foreign labor. Okamura was one of the people who promoted amendments to the Act on Residence of Foreigners.After the anti-Roma statements in August 2013, he said that the Roma should return to the land of their ancestors, for example... to India. Organization for Aid to Refugees in the person of its director Martin Rozumeka characterized statements of Okamura about foreigners and Roma as racist and xenophobic.

In July 2013 the Czech society was shaken by an anti-Semitic scandal. Famous Czech politician, MP Michal Babak made anti-Semitic remarks, describing in an interview for Czech TV former finance minister Miroslav Kalousek. “No Jew can do worse for the state treasury than did Kaloushek” - said Babak. It must be held in mind that Kaloushek is himself Catholic, and the new Minister Jan Fischer - a Jew.

In August 2013, after a series of anti-Roma statements in Czech towns MEP from the Czech Republic, former spokesman for Prime Minister V. Klaus Ivo Strejček, actually justified the actions of neo-Nazis, which he considered as a response to aggression on the part of the Roma minority and media bias.

On August 16, 2014, Senator T. Okamura spoke out negative about the possibility of holding a gay pride parade in Prague, noting that “sexuality is an intimate thing, its place is in bed, not on the street.” He critically reacted to the idea of Ombudsman Anna Shabatova to give registered partners the right to adopt children.

On May 1st a young politician from the liberal party ANO Milan Zavada, who was nominated by the party in the elections to the European Parliament, was forced to withdraw his candidacy after a video surfaced on YouTube, where he, while at a party, sang Nazi songs and made anti-Semitic comments.

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