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Thread: Two Thirds of Czechs Want Benes Decrees to Remain in Force - Poll

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    Two Thirds of Czechs Want Benes Decrees to Remain in Force - Poll

    Prague - Almost two thirds of Czechs believe that the decrees the then Czechoslovak president Edvard Benes issued after World War Two, on the basis of which ethnic Germans were transferred from the country, should remain in force, a November poll by the CVVM agency has shown.

    Only a half of Czechs espoused this view two years ago, CVVM said.

    The transfer of ethnic Germans from Czechoslovakia, mainly its border areas with prevailing German population (Sudetenland), is now considered justified by 47 percent of Czechs, which is less than in the past years, CVVM said.

    Before 2005, some two thirds of respondents repeatedly voiced their wish for the Benes decrees to keep valid.

    In the CVVM's two latest polls in 2006 and 2007, only a half of the respondents gave this answer. The Czechs thus expressed a more critical stand on the further validity of the decrees.

    Most recently, however, the portion of those supporting the decrees' further validity has risen to 65 percent again.

    Eight percent of those polled said the decrees should be abolished.

    The rest would not comment on the issue.

    As far as the post-war transfer of Sudeten Germans is concerned, the number of its advocates has been slowly decreasing.

    In the November poll, it was labelled unjust by 36 percent of respondents.

    Various age groups differ in their views on the transfer. Among the respondents over 60, it was supported by over 60 percent of them, compared to 31 percent among the respondents under 30.

    According to CVVM, a role is played by the fact that young people do not show much interest in the issue.

    The Benes decrees are the decrees President Benes issued from May to July 1945 to direct the state immediately after the World War Two end. Some of them expropriated the country's ethnic Germans and Hungarians, except for those who themselves suffered under Nazism, and stripped them of citizenship.

    Earlier this autumn, the Benes decrees came to the limelight in connection with the Lisbon treaty ratification by Prague. Opposed to the treaty, Czech President Vaclav Klaus set a condition for its signing a Czech opt-out from the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, incorporated in it.

    He said he was afraid that if applied to Czechs, the Charter would enable challenging the decrees and trigger off Sudeten Germans' claims of their former property on Czech soil.

    An EU summit in late October nodded to Prague being granted the opt-out. Klaus then said he would not set any further conditions. He signed the Lisbon treaty on November 3, as the last of the EU's heads of state, thus enabling it to come in force on December 1.
    The source:
    http://www.ceskenoviny.cz/news/zprav...ce-poll/410733

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    Earlier this autumn, the Benes decrees came to the limelight in connection with the Lisbon treaty ratification by Prague. Opposed to the treaty, Czech President Vaclav Klaus set a condition for its signing a Czech opt-out from the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, incorporated in it.

    He said he was afraid that if applied to Czechs, the Charter would enable challenging the decrees and trigger off Sudeten Germans' claims of their former property on Czech soil.
    Oh, the hypocrisy...

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