Leader of the far-right People’s Party – Our Slovakia (ĽSNS) Marián Kotleba organised a meeting of the party and its supporters that took place in Krásnohorské Podhradie, Košice Region, exactly one year after two Roma boys allegedly started a fire that severely damaged the medieval Krásna Hôrka Castle. The event was largely peaceful, without any rioting or clashes with Roma from the nearby settlement, the TASR newswire reported on March 10.
During his speech Kotleba said that even one year after the incident, “neither the Gypsy firebugs, nor their parents have been punished”, TASR wrote.
Mayor of Krásnohorske Podhradie Peter Bollo noted that the fire has made ethnic relations in the village worse.
“We commemorated this sad event by ringing bells at the time when the fire broke out at 13:30. People will also light candles in their windows at 18:00,” Bollo told TASR.
The Krásna Hôrka Castle was severely damaged on March 10, 2012, at the same day as the country’s general election took place. The investigation suggested that the fire originated at the foot of the castle hill, where two boys, aged 11 and 12, had been trying to light cigarettes. It seems they inadvertently set fire to nearby dry grass, which in turn set alight brush on the hill. Firemen told TASR that from there strong winds helped the fire spread to the castle roof.
On March 11, 2012, the wind again fanned the smouldering timbers, starting another fire to which fire fighters had to be called. Overall the fire destroyed the recently reconstructed upper Gothic palace, almost all the castle roof, and some of the museum exhibits and furnishings inside the castle. It also ravaged the bell-tower, where it melted three bells.
Apart from an insurance payout that should cover the bulk of the necessary repair work, several fund-raising activities have already begun: the castle’s owner, the Slovak National Museum (SNM), opened a special account from which all contributions will go towards renovation; and the LINAJE foundation of civic activists and fans of the castle founded a community profile on Facebook and also opened an account to collect money for Krásna Hôrka.
For more information about this story please see: Fire devastates Krásna Hôrka Castle
Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
12. Mar 2013 at 10:00