Czech ambassador visits West, offers condolences - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Czech ambassador visits West, offers condolences

As senators visited West, Texas for the first time since Wednesday's explosion, others came from around the nation to offer their condolences.

The Ambassador of the Czech Republic says he arrived in West yesterday. He says several West residents are of Czech descent and he wants to offer his condolences and let them know that the Czech republic is behind them 100 percent.

"This is basically a Czech city. The families have over 70 percent, many have some Czech origin. they have Czech names and they maintain Czech festivities," said Ambassador Petr Gandalovic.

As you look around the town of West, you see Czech bakeries and restaurants. It's a town that prides itself in its heritage.

Ambassador Gandalovic says maybe that's why they are so resilient.

"Well, it may have something to do with them being Czechs, living in these difficult conditions, being descendents of people who have come here at the end of the 19th century and you know, working up their lives here," Gandalovic said.

While the cause of this explosion is still under investigation, he says he is here strictly for the people.

"I've not been here to see the site because I do not want to interfere with the rescue workers, but of course I am here to express condolences and sympathies of the entire Czech nation."

"It's been all over the news in the Czech Republic. In this respect, I want to stress that the Czech Republic is a European country, it's a different thing than Chechnya. Obviously, we have been seeing things on the social media that people are mixing the Czech Republic and Chechnyea with the unfortunate events they are developing in Boston, so I wish to stress this is the Czech Republic, a country in central Europe and your ally."

He's an ally who says he is here to do whatever he can for this hurting community.

The ambassador says he hopes to meet with the Governor and the Mayor to convey the condolences of the Prime Minister and offer assistance in recovery efforts.

Ambassador Petr Gandalovic will remain in Texas until Monday.

Copyright 2013 KLTV. All rights reserved.

 

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