Pavel Smutný, a great friend of Israel, has passed away

The President of the Czech-Israeli Mutual Chamber of Commerce, an outstanding lawyer and philanthropist, JUDr. Pavel Smutný, died on Sunday, May 19, 2024. He was a prominent personality of Czech legal environment and a long-standing supporter of strengthening of commercial and cultural relations between the Czech Republic and the State of Israel. His legacy also involves significant traces in supporting the Czech culture and his endeavour in the Bohemian Heritage Fund. We are losing a great visionary from “old good school” and a great Czech patriot. Mr. Pavel Smutný was a co-owner of the renowned Císař, Češka, Smutný law firm based in Prague, which has recently renamed PORTOS. He engaged in defending democracy and societal responsibility, as well as the support of cultural events including outside the Czech Republic.

In 1996, he was at the birth of the Czech-Israeli Mutual Chamber of Commerce, wherein he served as the President. He regarded it key to cultivate and build commercial relations with Israel for the Czech Republic’s future economic development. His legacy includes the establishment of the Arnošt Lustig Prize, which is awarded annually in recognition of nationwide promotion of values such as Courage, Bravery, Humanity and Justice.

Mr. Smutný was recognised for his merits with a number of international awards. One of the most important ones is associated with the year 2016 when he was awarded the Prize of the Ministry of Culture for his long-standing support, protection and development of national cultural heritage. In November 2017, Pavel Smutný was decorated with the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in the Chevalier degree. On October 28, 2019, he was decorated with the Medal of Merit 1st Class by President of the Czech Republic Miloš Zeman in recognition of his merit in the development of relations between the Czech Republic and the State of Israel. In 2023, he won the prestigious Jerusalem Award as the first Czech national ever for his sustained support of relations between the Czech Republic and the State of Israel.

“Pavel Smutný dedicated a major part of his life to developing commercial as well as cultural relations between the Czech Republic and Israel, which he regarded as a key partnership for the future economic and geopolitical development of both countries. The members of our chamber displayed a great confidence in him by repeatedly electing him as the President of Czech Israeli Mutual Chamber of Commerce. As the first Czech in the history, he received the prestigious Jerusalem Award in 2023 for a long-standing support of Czech-Israeli relations,” Ondřej Bočkay, the Chamber CEO, recalls. “We are losing an exceptional man, humanist, patriot and visionary, who always managed to catch attention with his unique sense of humour and his way of expression. I am personally devastated by his early demise. We are all going to miss him very much. May he rest in peace.”

Source: Czech – Israeli Mutual Chamber of Commerce

Pavel Smutný

October 17, 1959 – May 19, 2024

Scroll to top
Skip to content