Platform commemorates 25 years since the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia

Prague, 18 November 2014. The Platform of European Memory and Conscience commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia by attending a student discussion with the Presidents of the Visegrad countries and Germany, followed by laying flowers at the site of the violent crackdown on the student demonstration of 17 November 1989.

On 17 November 1989, a peaceful student pro-democracy protest was brutally beaten up by the repressive forces of the Czechoslovak totalitarian regime. This event sparked what became known as the Velvet Revolution which led to the fall of the dictatorship.

We must not forget that the victims of the beating included underage children, that many victims suffered permanent disabilites and that the entire background of the bloody crackdown has not been elucidated until today,” says Neela Winkelmann, Managing Director of the Platform, herself a participant of the student protest.

The Platform expresses its respect for all victims of Communism. Attempts to relativise the crimes of Communism have one goal: to obliterate the suffering of the victims, to erase historical memory and to pave the road for non-democratic forces and movements,” says Göran Lindblad, President of the Platform.

Presidents 17.11.2014 Presidents Messrs János Áder, Bronislaw Komorowski, Miloš Zeman and Joachim Gauck at the discussion at the Faculty of Law, Charles University, Prague on 17 November 2014


Photos: Petr Blažek


Pawel Ukielski, member of the Executive Board and Neela Winkelmann, Managing Director of the Platform laying flowers at the memorial to the victims of 17 November 1989 on Národní street in Prague.