A fake attack took place in Prague’s Old Town Square on Sunday, where men pretended to be affiliated with ISIS. They came in a Hummer and were accompanied with fake BB guns, a camel and a goat. The charade was coordinated by an anti-immigration activist who intended to alarm citizens and warn them of the supposed threats of Islam.
“We are bringing you the light of true faith,” said Martin Konvicka, who dressed like an imam during the stunt. According to a spokesman for the group, the event was supposed to make people realize "what is happening every day several thousand kilometres from here and is now coming even to us, in Central and Western Europe".
The fake ISIS attack, which resulted in panic amongst those in the Czech capital, was approved by City Hall, which reportedly left the authorities without power. But the City Hall claims they did not have all the facts. “We only had very basic information of what the spectacle would be like,” said a spokesman for City Hall to The New York Times. “Had we know what was going to transpire, we would certainly have banned it.”
Even so, the police eventually had to put the demonstration to an end when the Islamophobic group started to act out mock beheadings. In the aftermath of the event, the Czech police admitted approving the demonstration was a mistake, as it left tourists afraid and injured while fleeing the event.
“I was entering Old Town Square from a far corner and heard gunshots,” said Andrea Steinova, a Prague resident, to the Times. “Then I saw a group of about 40 people, some of them yelling in Hebrew, running toward me. A couple of them tripped and fell, and others ran over them.”
But not everyone in the country, which is home to 20,000 Muslims, was impressed. Footage of the incident shows some bystanders shouting “Xenophobe!” to the protesters and Czech interior minister, Milan Chovanec, took to Twitter to call the protest a sign of “idiocy.”