Czech top court rules in favour of German shot trying to cross Iron Curtain

The Constitutional Court has ruled in favour of a German man who was shot in the knee by Czechoslovak border guards in July 1989 while trying to cross the Iron Curtain in the Communist era. Thomas Bartsche received only CZK 5,500 from the Czech courts in compensation for lasting injuries stemming from the shooting. The courts have been ordered to look into awarding him appropriate compensation.

The Constitutional Court ruled on Thursday that he had suffered the injuries in extraordinary circumstances that justified higher compensation. In addition he could not have known that communism would fall soon after, a judge said.

Author: Ian Willoughby