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Papal homage to Havel at Czech leader's funeral

December 23, 2011

As mourners attended the funeral of former Czech President Vaclav Havel in Prague, Pope Benedict XVI released a statement honoring the deceased leader for his efforts to defend human rights “at a time when these were systematically denied to the people of your country.” The Pope praised the “visionary leadership” of Havel during the early years after the collapse of the Communist regime, and offered his thanks for “the freedom that the people of the Czech Republic now enjoy.”


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