Prague is renaming a street near the Russian Embassy to Ukrajinských hrdinů

Stanislava Benešová

Prague will change the name of a part of Coronation Street near the Russian Embassy to Ukrajinských hrdinů. At the same time, it will name a nearby railway bridge after Ukrainian war hero Vitalij Skakun, who died on February 24 in the Ukrainian town of Kherson, where he blew up a bridge to prevent the advance of Russian troops. City councilors on Friday night authorized the city council to approve the name. The move was proposed by Prague 6 city council.

Councillor Jan Chabr (TOP 09) said the proposal was supported on Wednesday by the town hall’s localities commission, whose recommendation the councilors approved the names of streets and public spaces. According to the councilor, the change will not cause any complications for residents, as no one lives in the part of the street near Boris Němcov Square.

“No natural person is residing in the area who would have to change his or her ID card, nor is there a registered office of any legal entity except for the Russian Federation,” the councilor said.

Ondřej Prokop, head of the ANO club of councilors, criticized the renaming of the street. “I can’t help thinking that it seems like a cheap PR gesture by some representatives of Prague 6 instead of focusing on what bothers the people of Prague,” he said.

He added that the name “Coronation” has its historical meaning. Chabr replied that nothing would change that. “Korunovační Street in Prague is staying; it is just being shortened by about 150 meters,” he said.

At least temporarily, Prague 22 has also renamed one of its streets connected to the war in Ukraine. According to its spokeswoman, Veronika Blažková, the district’s councilors have decided to rename the signs on Friendship Street to Czech-Ukrainian Friendship temporarily.

“Our main street in Uhříněvsi refers to the friendship between Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union. It is symbolic that we are now giving it a different meaning, “said Councillor Štěpána Zmátlo (KDU-ČSL).

The city council approves the naming or renaming of public spaces in Prague. Anyone can submit suggestions. Proposals are first discussed by the city council of the respective district. After approval by its management, it is referred to the municipal localities commission. If they agree with it, it is then discussed by the Prague City Council. According to the law, public spaces must not be named after anyone living.