Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Slovaks mourn Havel’s death

VÁCLAV Havel, the first post-communist president of Czechoslovakia, died on December 18. He was rightly considered a moral authority not only in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Slovak Prime Minister Iveta Radičová wrote in a letter of condolence, but around the world, because for decades he was one of the bravest speakers of the truth even at a time when most Czechs and Slovaks had resigned from doing so and had accepted a life under totalitarianism.

VÁCLAV Havel, the first post-communist president of Czechoslovakia, died on December 18. He was rightly considered a moral authority not only in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Slovak Prime Minister Iveta Radičová wrote in a letter of condolence, but around the world, because for decades he was one of the bravest speakers of the truth even at a time when most Czechs and Slovaks had resigned from doing so and had accepted a life under totalitarianism.

News of the death of Havel, in the picture by the TASR newswire below, a prominent playwright and outspoken critic of the communist regime, provoked a widespread response among the Slovak public, and among Slovakia’s leading political and cultural figures, many of whom were his close friends. It also prompted a spontaneous response among Slovaks on online social networks as well as in the streets – for instance in front of the Czech Embassy in Bratislava, where people came to light candles and lay flowers in memory of the late president, who served two terms as president of the Czech Republic after Czechoslovakia split in 1993.

Slovakia declared a day of state mourning on December 23, between 8:00 and 18:00, and on the same day Radičová and President Ivan Gašparovič attended Havel’s state funeral in Prague.


The processing of personal data is subject to our Privacy Policy and the Cookie Policy. Before submitting your e-mail address, please make sure to acquaint yourself with these documents.

Top stories

Police detain another person in promissory notes case

Ex-director of private broadcaster TV Markíza, Pavol Rusko, was detained shortly after being heard.

Pavol Rusko

First 500 jobseekers start training to work in automotive jobs

Neither labour offices nor the automotive industry dare to estimate to what extent the project will be successful.

For a Decent Slovakia organise another protest for June 22

At the same time, they are suing ex-PM Robert Fico, in response to his statements made during the protest rallies in February, citing fear-mongering and defamation.

For a Decent Slovakia represenattives - L-R: Lukáš Füle, Karolína Farská, Juraj Šeliga and Veronika Bruncková - filed a suit against ex-PM Robert Fico June 15.

Construction of the longest tunnel in Slovakia gets complicated

Érsek considers delays in construction of the cross-country highway to be unacceptable.

Western portal of the Višňové tunnel