The Prague Spring 1968: A National Security Archive Documents Reader

By JaromÍr NavrÁtil | Go to book overview
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June 27–29, 1967: The 4th Congress of the Czechoslovak Writers' Union in Prague criticizes the cultural policy of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, especially restrictions on the creative freedom of writers.

September 26–27, 1967: The Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia (CPCz CC) decides that the Ministry of Culture and Information will edit the weekly magazine of the Union of Czechoslovak Writers, Literární noviny. Klíma, Liehm, and Vaculík are expelled from the CPCz.

October 30–31, 1967: At a CPCz CC plenum, Alexander Dubček criticizes the first secretary of CPCz and president of Czechoslovakia, Novotn?.

October 31, 1967: Police violently suppress a demonstration by Prague university students protesting poor dormitory conditions.

December 8–9,1967: Brezhnev arrives in Prague at the personal request of Novotn? for a brief, unofficial visit. He carries out separate talks with several members of the Presidium of CPCz CC.

December 11, 1967: An extraordinary session of CPCz CC Presidium discusses dividing the posts of the first secretary and the president of the republic. Five members vote for separation, five against. At the meeting, the CPCz CC Presidium also discusses Novotn?'s position on Slovakia.

December 19–21, 1967: During a CPCz CC meeting, Novotn? is criticized and asked to resign as first secretary. The meeting is adjourned until January 3,1968.


January 3–5, 1968: The so-called January meeting of CPCz CC takes place. The posts of first

secretary and president of the republic are separated. Dubček is elected first secretary. Novotn? remains president.

January 20, 1968: Upon Dubček's request, János Kádár meets him in Topolčianky, Slovakia.

January 22–23, 1968: At a plenary session of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Slovakia, Vasil Bil'ak is elected first secretary.

January 24, 1968: The Czechoslovak Writers Union elects Eduard Goldstiicker chairman. The Union decides to publish Literární listy as its own new weekly magazine.

January 29–30, 1968: Dubček meets Brezhnev and Podgorny in Moscow.

February 4, 1968: Dubček meets Kádár in Komárno. Zoltán Kom6csin and Károly Erdélyi also represent the Hungarian side.

February 6, 1968: The CPCz CC Presidium decides that reports from the sessions of the CPCz CC Presidium and Secretariat will be published in the media.

February 7, 1968: Dubček meets Wladyslaw Gomulka in Ostrava (Northern Moravia).

February 22,1968: At Prague Castle, Dubček delivers the main address at a ceremonial session of CPCz CC, the Central Committee of the National Front of the ČSSR, and the government, on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of February 1948. Also speaking are Brezhnev, Gomulka, Ulbricht, Kádár, Ceausescu, Zhivkov, and Vlahovič.


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