Protesters have tried to break into the National Museum in Prague to tear down the Ukrainian flag from its facade, which was hung up as a sign of Czech solidarity with Kiev, Czech Television reported.
On Saturday, Czech media reported that thousands of people took to the streets of Prague demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Petr Fiala amid rising costs of living.
Czech Television said that about 10,000 people gathered in the Czech capital, while several dozen marched to the National Museum building in an attempt to get the Ukrainian flag down.
Police prevented the demonstrators from entering the museum and 18 protesters were detained. A police spokesperson told Czech Television that two law enforcement officers were injured.
Interior Minister Vít Rakušan (STAN) described the violent speeches at the end of the demonstration as unacceptable. “I expect the organisers to distance themselves from these acts of violence. It gives the impression that the entire demonstration against poverty was just a cover for pro-Russian provocation, and we certainly cannot be tolerant of such manifestations.”
“We have gathered here today to take a stand against this poverty,” Jindrich Rajchl, a lawyer leading the non-parliamentary PRO party, told the crowd in central Wenceslas Square.
Critics accuse Fiala’s government of caring more about Ukraine with substantial military and humanitarian aid sent to the war-torn country since the invasion started in February 2022.
Protesters also slammed NATO, with Czech media reporting a protester with a loudspeaker called on the crowd to tear down a Ukrainian flag from the National Museum building at the top of Wenceslas Square.
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