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Digital Archive International History Declassified

November 19, 1989

PROCLAMATION ON THE ESTABLISHMENT OF CIVIC FORUM 19 NOVEMBER 1989

This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation

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    The Czech Civic Forum declares its purpose for existence and addresses its primary demands for reform which should be promptly negotiated with the government.
    "Proclamation on the Establishment of Civic Forum 19 November 1989," November 19, 1989, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Ústav pro sodobé d“jiny (ÚSD), Akademie v“deské republiky (AV —R), Koordina–ní centrum Ob–anského fóra (KC OF) Archive, file Dokumenty OF https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/117216
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PROCLAMATION

At the meeting in the Prague Theater Club on 19 November at 10:00 a.m. the Civic Forum was established as the mouthpiece of that part of the Czechoslovak public which is ever more critical toward the policies of the current Czechoslovak leadership and which was recently deeply shaken by the brutal massacre of students who were peacefully demonstrating. Charter 77, The Czechoslovak Helsinki Committee, The Circle of Independent Intelligence, The Movement for Civic Freedom, Artforum, Renewal, independent students, The Czechoslovak Democratic Initiative, VONS, The Independent World Coalition, The Open Dialogue, The Czechoslovak PEN Club Center, several member of the Czechoslovak Socialist Party, The Czechoslovak Peoples Parties, religious parties, creative and other associations, several former and current members of the CPCz and other democratically minded citizens will take part in the work of this forum. The Civic Forum feels itself competent to negotiate immediately with the government about the critical situation in our country, to express the actual demands of the public and to discuss the solutions.

The Civic Forum wishes to begin such negotiations, which should be the beginning of a universal discussion on the future of Czechoslovakia, by a negotiation of these urgent and ever more openly formulated demands:

1. That those members of the Presidium of the CC CPCz who are directly connected with the preparation of the intervention by the five members of the Warsaw Pact in the year 1968 and who are responsible for the years long devastation of all areas of our society, immediately step down. These are, namely, Gustav Husák, Miloš Jakeš, Jan Fojtík, Miloslav Zavadil, Karel Hofman and Alois Indra. The pernicious politics of people, who for years refused any kind of democratic dialog with the society, completely legally resulted in the terrible events of the last days.

2. That the First Secretary of the Municipal Committee (MC) CPCz in Prague Miroslav Stepán and the Federal Minister of the Interior, František Kincl, who are responsible for all of the measures which the police have carried out over the last few months against the peaceful demonstrations of citizens, immediately step down.

3. That a committee be set up which would concretely investigate these measures, find the culprits and propose punishments for them. Civic Forum representatives must be included in this committee.

4. That all the criminals of conscience, including those who have been detained in connection with the last demonstration, be immediately released.

The Civic Forum demands that this proclamation be published in the official Czechoslovak media.

The Civic Forum stakes its authority behind the plan for a general strike on 27 November from 12:00 p.m. until 2:00 p.m., called by Prague university students, and understands it to be an expression of support for the demands which it wants to discuss with the state leader-ship.

The Civic Forum believes that its creation and task corresponds with the will of the 40,000 current signatories of the petition Several Sentences, and is open to all the constituents and forces of society whose concern is that our country should begin peacefully finding the way to a democratic social order, and through it to economic prosperity.  

On behalf of the Civic Forum:  

Eng. Rudolf Battek, Petr Cepek, Václav Havel, Milan Hruška, Prof. Dr. Milan Jelínek, Milan Kiiazko, Dr. Lubomír Kopecký CSc., Jifí Kfízan, Václav Malý, Martin Mejstfík, Petr Oslzlý, Dr. Libor Pátý CSc., Jana Petrová, Jan Ruml, Prof. Dr. Venek Šilhán, Ondfej Trojan, Eng. Josef Vavroušek CSc., Saša Vondra.

Prague, 19 November 1989.