The Young Communist League today released a statement condemning the decision of the Czech government to declare the Communist Youth Union (KSM) illegal. The statement, which refers to the danger of a “growing anti-communism across Europe”, was also signed by the Communist Pary of Britain and calls on all democratic organisations in Britain to voice their opposition to the moves made by the Czech Ministry of the Interior.

The Ministry took the decision last month to declare the KSM illegal on the grounds that it calls for replacement of private ownership of the means of production with public ownership. The KSM are mounting a legal challenge to the decision and are calling for international support for campaign.

Ben Stevenson, General Secretary of the YCL, called on as many people as possible to write letters of protest to the Czech Embassy, arguing that "declaring an organisation illegal because of its political views is a very dangerous step and can be seen as the thin end of the wedge in Eastern Europe."

Echoing his comments, John Foster, International Secretary of the CPB pointed out that "the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia (KSCM) is a legitimate political party which polled 18.5% in the most recent elections. The government has no right to declare its youth wing illegal. This shows the threat that communists pose to the rich and powerful in the Czech Republic."

A petition in support of the KSM will be launched at the Communist University of Britain, due to take place this weekend in Ruskin House, Croydon, and the YCL plans to organise joint protests with the CPB and other organisations at the Czech Embassy in the UK.

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