Statement of the Faculty of Arts regarding 17 November at Albertov

On 15 November 1939, hundreds of students of the Faculty of Arts took part in the demonstration during the funeral of Jan Opletal. On 17 November 1939, our colleague, history professor Josef Matoušek, was executed by the Nazi authorities.

Fifty years later, in 1989, many of our current university colleagues took part in the demonstrations on Národní třída. There were also many others whom the regime prevented from studying, in fear they could one day rise against it.

On 17 November 2015, many of those who tried to light a candle at the Albertov monument were, once more, our students and colleagues. Although they attempted to pay tribute to the memory of their predecessors who faced totalitarian regimes in a peaceful and respectable manner, the police barrier prevented them from doing so. In contrast, the participants of the demonstration organised by Alliance against Islam, many of whom were adherents of extreme far-right opinions, were allowed to access Albertov.

On 17 November 2015, at the International Students‘ Day, students of Charles University were demeaned and the significant national holiday was abused, in a calculating manner, for the promotion of specific political aims, extreme attitudes, and xenophobia.