Boston Marathon bombings: Czech Republic's ambassador 'concerned' by Americans confusing his country with Chechnya

Many tweets apparently confused the two countries, which are around 1,700 miles apart

James Legge
Monday 22 April 2013 12:03
Petr Gandalovic, the Czech ambassador to the United States, says says he is 'concerned' by Americans confusing his country with Chechnya
Petr Gandalovic, the Czech ambassador to the United States, says says he is 'concerned' by Americans confusing his country with Chechnya

The Czech ambassador to the United States has put on record his alarm that during the hunt for the Boston Marathon bombing suspect so many Americans on social media appeared to confuse his own country - in central Europe - with Chechnya - a republic in south-west Russia.

As the identities of Chechen brothers Dzokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev - the suspects in Monday's attack which killed three and injured over 150 - filtered across the internet, many people tweeted that the pair were from the Czech Republic.

In a statement posted on his embassy's website, Petr Gandalovic said he was "deeply shocked by the tragedy," adding: "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. The Czech Republic and Chechnya are two very different entities.

"As the President of the Czech Republic Miloš Zeman noted in his message to President Obama, 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."

The two countries are around 1,700 miles apart.

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