Source: (2004) Paper presented at the Third Conference of the European Forum for Victim-Offender Mediation and Restorative Justice, “Restorative Justice in Europe: Where are we heading?", Budapest, Hungary, 14-16 October. Downloaded 24 May 2005.

For the Czech Republic, as for many other countries, the fall of the "iron curtain" in 1989 and the end of the cold war marked a fundamental break: a new beginning and an opportunity to create new ways of doing things. It brought far-reaching reforms in the criminal justice system, initially in Czechoslovakia, and then, following partition, in the Czech Republic. We can say that the modern history of community sanctions and measures, as well as that of the probation and mediation activities, only began in the early 1990s. The first alternative concept was introduced into the Czech criminal law in 1994 as a diversion (conditional cessation of prosecution). This step was revolutionary in this period since it introduced elements of Anglo-Saxon law into the Czech continental legal system. It also created the ideal starting point for initial mediation activity during criminal proceedings. (excerpt)