Prague court rules illegal police removal of Tibetan flag during Chinese Presidents visit

Hundreds of Czech Tibet supporters protest against Xi Jinping's visit to Prague in Mar 2016.
Hundreds of Czech Tibet supporters protest against Xi Jinping’s visit to Prague in Mar 2016.

(, Dec14, 2017) — The Prague Municipal Court has ruled Dec 12 that the countrys police had acted illegally when they ordered two men to remove the national flags of Tibet and Taiwan from their windows in a building next to the Hilton Hotel when Chinese President Xi Jinping was staying there during his visit in 2016, reported Dec 13.

The court in the capital of the Czech Republic has thereby rejected an enquiry over the issue by the police department itself which had concluded that the action by its personnel was legitimate.

The two men, Ladislav Pelcl and Martin Malos, who worked in the Diamond Point building next to the Hotel Hilton had put in their windows two big sheets of paper with the flags of Tibet and Taiwan printed on them to show their protest against violation of human rights by China. Two police officers arrived immediately afterwards and said the rapid reaction unit considered the flags in the windows a potential risk because movements behind the windows could not be monitored, the report said.

However, an expert report ordered by the court has concluded that the police could have monitored the situation inside, behind the windows covered with the flags, with the equipment they had, namely thermal imaging cameras.

The report cited the courts panel head Ladislav Hejtmanek as saying the removal of the flags was unlawful because it was not necessary. He has said the police had the right to search the room, about which both Pelcl and Malik had not complained.

The police had pressed on people to remove flags in other places in the area, too, Pelcl has said.

The report noted that the Czech police had faced criticism over their actions against pro-Tibet activists and other people during the three-day visit of Xi last year. The police admitted to have made a mistake only with regard to their intervention in the building of the film faculty with a demand for the removal of Tibetan flags from there.


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