The Czech Foreign Ministry intends to send employees of its security service to Moscow to protect its diplomats. This decision was made after the protests of the Russians, dissatisfied with the demolition of the monument to Marshal Ivan Konev in Prague
Czech Embassy in Moscow
(Photo: Sergey Savostyanov / TASS)
The Czech Foreign Ministry considers it appropriate to strengthen security measures for diplomatic mission staff in Moscow. This was stated in an interview with RBC by the head of the diplomatic department Tomas Petrzycek. “We plan to strengthen security measures for diplomats and will send security officers directly from our Foreign Ministry to the Czech embassy in Moscow,” he said.
Earlier, the Czech Foreign Ministry sent a note to Russian colleagues over an action near the Czech Embassy in Moscow on April 5, the responsibility for which took over activists of the Other Russia movement. “The Czech Embassy in the Russian Federation today sent an official note to the Russian Foreign Ministry. We expect that the Russian authorities will take the necessary measures to prevent such incidents, ”said spokeswoman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic Zuzana Shtikhova. The protesters fixed a banner with the words “Stop Fascism” on the fence of the Czech Embassy and threw a smoke bomb into its territory. On April 16, the participants of “Other Russia” held a rally using smoke bombs at the Czech consulate in St. Petersburg, due to which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the republic also expressed concern and appealed to the Russian diplomatic department. During both actions, demonstrators protested against the decision of the Prague municipal authorities to dismantle the monument to Marshal of the Soviet Union Ivan Konev.
According to Tomasz Petřicek, Russia has not yet responded to requests from the Czech side. “Unfortunately, we are still waiting for a reaction from the Russian authorities. We did not receive an answer either about the incident in Moscow, or about the incident in St. Petersburg, where our consulate general was attacked, ”he told RBC.
The monument to Marshal Konev, located on one of the squares in the sixth district of Prague since 1980, was removed from the pedestal on April 3 by decision of the city authorities. As the district’s press secretary Ondrej Shramek stated, the city council decided to dismantle the monument in September last year. The sculpture will be moved to the storehouse, and then it will become part of the exposition of the Museum of the 20th Century. The Russian Foreign Ministry called this step a crime and a violation of the Friendship Treaty of 1993. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu appealed to the head of the Investigative Committee of Russia, Alexander Bastrykin, with a request to prosecute foreign officials responsible for the demolition of monuments to Soviet citizens.
In the Czech Republic, they believe that the dismantling of the monument and its transfer to the museum does not contradict international agreements. “The movement of the monument did not violate any agreement between the Czech Republic and Russia. The agreement of 1993 does not indicate that this monument can only stand on a square in Prague and nowhere else. But what the 1993 agreement says explicitly is the obligation of both parties not to interfere in each other’s internal affairs, ”reminded RBC Czech Foreign Minister Tomas Petřicek.