March 20th, 2009 in Breaking News, ObamaGate

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Obama hasn’t denounced a ban on freedom of assembly for his upcoming visit in Prague

Prague bans demonstration on day of Obama’s visit | Prague Daily Monitor.

Prague, March 19 (CTK) - The Prague Town Hall has banned a rally of opponents of the construction of a U.S. radar base on Czech soil that was to take place on April 5 when U.S. President Barack Obama will be staying in the city, the town hall says in a statement sent to CTK.

The Town Hall justifies the ban by possible complications in car and public transport.

Jan Palach Square in which the demonstration was to be held will be closed over Obama’s visit.

It is speculated that the square might be the place at which Obama will make his planned European speech.

The Town Hall said the time span from 8:00 to 22:00 on April 5 is too long. It also said two organisers is too little to ensure security of the expected 500 participants.

The Town Hall said it also took into consideration the police information about massive security measures to accompany Obama’s visit. They are also to be taken in Jan Palach Square.

City clerks proposed to the organiser to move the demonstration to another place, but he has not reacted.

The clerks say the organiser has also announced a similar meeting in Wenceslas Square.

Obama will arrive in Prague on Saturday, April 4, and will leave on Sunday, April 5. His programme includes talks with the heads of 27 EU states. The Czech Republic is EU president in the first half of the year.

Obama is also expected to meet former Czech president Vaclav Havel and make a sightseeing tour of Prague.

The Czech Republic and the United States signed last year two treaties on the radar base that is to be stationed some 90km southwest of Prague.

The base together with ten interceptor missiles in Poland are to be European elements of the U.S. anti-missile shield that is to protect against missiles that countries like Iran might launch.

The radar base is rejected by more than two thirds of Czechs and support in the Chamber of Deputies is not sure either.

Several demonstrations have been announced in Prague on the days of Obama’s visit.

Under law town halls have the right to ban a rally at places where participants would face a serious danger, or where it would seriously restrict transport and supplies.