A total of 300 people took part in a protest rally outside the municipal office in the town of Krompachy in Košice region on Saturday, September 5, with the demonstration aimed against what its organisers from Slovensá Pospolitosť (Slovak Togetherness) call "Roma crime", the TASR newswire wrote. Around 100 Pospolitost supporters, with another 200 local citizens, attended the rally.
Marián Kotleba, one of Slovenská Pospolitosť's leaders, was also supposed to take part in the protest, however, the head of Slovakia‘s Police Corps Presidium, Ján Packa, told TASR that Kotleba had been arrested earlier in the day in Banská Bystrica and charged with inciting national, racial and ethnic hatred.
The rally participants said they were challenging the failure of state authorities to deal with crimes perpetrated by the Roma, particularly in eastern Slovakia. In addition to Pospolitosť members, local citizens said they are outraged at crimes committed by Roma and demanded that authorities start tackling the issue.
Later the demonstrators marched across the town chanting slogans such as "white Krompachy" or "join us", with the crowd having swollen by another 200 people. After the march, the protest came to an end. No disturbances occurred at the protest, with 100 police officers – including members of special units – on duty in the area, said Packa. TASR
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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7. Sep 2009 at 14:00