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Czech citizens condemn decision to wrap Soviet marshal's statue in tarp — Russian embassy

PRAGUE, August 31. /TASS/. The Russian Embassy in Prague said it had been receiving letters from Czech citizens condemning the municipal authorities’ decision to wrap in tarp a monument to Soviet military commander Ivan Konev in the Prague 6 district.

"The embassy has been receiving letters from Czech citizens who condemn this move by the municipal authorities. Many of them wonder which side would the incumbent municipal government of the Prague 6 district support during the World War II," the embassy said in a statement, posted on Facebook.

"It should be noted that the radical decision to cover in tarpaulin the monument to one of those who saved Europe from horrors of Nazism was made in the run-up to the 80th anniversary of the most horrific military conflict in human history," the statement says.

The Russian embassy views those actions as a yet another attempt to desecrate the memory of Red Army soldiers, who gave their lives to liberate Czechoslovakia from Nazi troops.

Czech Presidential Spokesman Jiri Ovcacek condemned the municipal authorities’ decision earlier this week.

The district’s head Ondrej Kolar said on Thursday that Konev’s monument falls victim to vandals at least two times a year, which, according to him, points to the local residents’ negative view of the Soviet military commander. The politician insists on removing the monument and relocating it to the territory of the Russian Embassy, also located in the Prague 6 district.

The monument to Konev was placed in Prague in 1980 to commemorate the 35th anniversary of the liberation of the Czech capital from Nazi invaders by the 1st Ukrainian Front of the Soviet military forces, headed by Konev.