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Czech angry at being confused for Chechnya

Source : IANS
Last Updated: Sun, Apr 21, 2013 03:10 hrs

Washington, April 21 (IANS/RIA Novosti) The Czech ambassador to the US has expressed concern over remarks in the US social networks wrongly aiming his Central European country over the Boston Marathon terror attack for Chechan rebels.

Dozens of messages accusing the Czechs of terrorism and even calling for US retaliation against the Czech Republic appeared in the US segments of Twitter and Facebook Friday after reports emgerged that the two suspects in Boston Marathon bombing had Chechen origins.

"As more information on the origin of the alleged perpetrators is coming to light, I am concerned to note in the social media a most unfortunate misunderstanding in this respect," Czech Ambassador Petr Gandalovic said in a statement.

The bombing suspects -- Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, and his younger brother, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19 -- were said to be members of a family originally from Chechnya. It lies in the volatile North Caucasus region of Russia where federal forces have been battling Islamist insurgents for years.

"The Czech Republic and Chechnya are two very different entities - the Czech Republic is a Central European country (that was originally a part of Czechoslovakia); Chechnya is a part of the Russian Federation," Gandalovic pointed out. The two countries are about 2,730 km apart.

The diplomat reminded the bloggers that "the Czech Republic is an active and reliable partner of the United States in the fight against terrorism".

"We are determined to stand side by side with our allies in this respect, there is no doubt about that," Gandalovic said.

While Tamerlan, 26, was killed in a gunfight with police, Dzhokar, 19, was captured Friday night from a boat in a yard of a residential house in suburban Watertown after a massive manhunt that virtually shut down Boston, one of America's oldest cities.

--IANS/RIA Novosti

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