European Commission rejects call for a block-wide ban on denial of communist crimes

The European Commission rejected on Thursday a call by the Czech Republic and five other post-communist countries for an EU-wide ban on denial of communist crimes. The commission said that opinion was too divided on the matter, and that the conditions to make a legislative proposal had not been met. Commenting on the commission's decision, Czech Foreing Minister Karel Schwarzenberg said on Thursday that sometimes 'such demonstrative steps' need to be taken to push things forward.

Earlier this month, the foreign ministers of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria, Latvia and Lithuania, sent a joint appeal to the EU's justice commissioner, Viviane Reding, arguing that the principle of justice should assure just treatment of the victims of every totalitarian regime, and the victims of communism were all too frequently forgotten.

Author: Jan Richter