MINELRES: Romania: Bulletin DIVERS on Ethnic Minorities - 14 (142)/2005

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Divers Bulletin no. 14 (142) / April 18, 2005

News
MALAIDILEM BAHTALE ROMENTZA – I MET HAPPY ROMA PEOPLE
DAYS OF IDISH CULTURE IN BUCHAREST
ROMANIAN GOVERNMENT SUED BY ETHNIC RUSSIAN
HUNGARIANS IN ROMANIA WELCOME EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT DECISION REGARDING EU
ENLARGEMENT
CNS HAS A NEW AUTONOMY PROJECT OF THE SZECKLER’S COUNTY
ROMANIAN-HUNGARIAN DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL PRESENTS ITS AWARDS
---------------------------------------------------------------

News

MALAIDILEM BAHTALE ROMENTZA – I MET HAPPY ROMA PEOPLE

BUCHAREST - "T-aven bahtale, romalen ai vi tumen gajalen!", namely "Be
happy, you Roma people and Romanians!". This is salute made to the crowd
of people on April 9, who gathered for the International Day of Ethnic
Roma in front of the National Theatre in Bucharest to take part in the
joy of ethnic Roma and to share their values.

Spoon markers, coppersmiths, silver jewellers and ethnic Roma folkloric
ensembles brought with them the beauty of their customs and art to make
known the real values of the ethnic Roma culture. Dressed with popular
costumes very similar to the Romanian traditional ones they exhibited
the merchandise, cut spoons, strung breads on thread and invited the
visitors to taste traditional ethnic Roma cuisine, most of which is
based on meat.

In the centre of Bucharest, in a sunny April day, ethnic Roma and
Romanian children were given a lesson of history: multi-culture embraced
an entire city and sealed the sign up of an agreement of mutual
understanding.
The official opening took place in presence of the guests,
representatives of the European Union and of the Government of Romania
who wanted to stress out upon the important cultural heritage of the
ethnic Roma and to declare the support for the policies meant to improve
their condition.

Minister of Culture and Cults Mona Musca, who also attended the meeting
said: “The Romanian culture becomes richer with the ethnic Roma inflow,
which should be a lesson for us all to understand we could become richer
with other people’s assets”. Minister of Culture also said diversity is
one of the most important European values ad it is both the festival of
the ethnic Roma and of the Romanians.

The foyer of the National Theatre also hosted an exhibition of painting
with ethnic Roma specific, of artist Eugen Raportoru, followed by an
exhibition of photos and reproduction of universal painting on the
ethnic Roma culture. This event occasioned the launching of the brochure
“Rromanipe – fundaments of ethnic Roma culture”, published by
Association Satra/ASTRA – Amare Rromentza, an interesting volume
describing in detail the ethnic Roma’s traditions and beliefs.

After the exhibition of ethnic Roma traditional professions, the scene
located in Universitatii Piazza filled up with talented ethnic Roma
artists. 
Author: DIVERS


DAYS OF IDISH CULTURE IN BUCHAREST

BUCHAREST – The theatre show, a documentary photo exhibition and a
two-days symposium on Idish identity were included in the program of
Days of Idish culture, an event developing in Bucharest between April 10
and 12. The meeting dedicated to Jewish Idish culture is emphasizing
upon the creation transmitted through Idish language.

At the State Jewish Theatre, the event was opened through the
documentary "Mostenirea lui Goldfaden" (Goldfaden’s inheritance) and the
show "Sonata Kreutzer" by Iacob Gordin, in Idish (with whispering
translation into Romanian). Accomplished on a scenario signed by Manase
Radnev, Radu Gabrea’s documentary evokes the fascinating figure of Avram
Goldfaden (1840-1908), who was establishing 126 years ago, in the north
of Romania, at Iasi, with a Jewish population at that time of over 50%,
the first professional Jewish theatre in the world. The film describes
Goldfaden’s road from Iasi to New York, via Odessa and Sankt Petersburg,
and is rediscovering an exceptional character of the Jewish culture.

Sonata Kreutzer (Fericirea furata – Stolen Happiness) by Iacob Gordin,
in the artistic stage management of Moshe Yassur (USA), who also signs
the music illustration, is picturing a family life moment. The show was
very successful at the Festival of Jewish Theatre in Berlin.

Other three plays of Iacob Gordin, “Mirale Efros”, ''Dumnezeu, om si
diavol'' and ''Hasie Orfana'' were played on the scene of State Jewish
Theatre in Bucharest.

Besides, New Europe College hosted last week the symposium “Zilele
culturii Idish” (Days of Idish culture) and Jakob Schleicher, Brigitte
Dalinger (Austria), Avrom Nowersztern (Israel), Helen Beer (Australia),
Armin Eidherr, Harry Culler, Mirjam Bercovici si Lia Benjamin (Romania)
held the floor. The themes under discussion focused upon the
significance of Idish theatre, upon the relation of Israel with Idish
language and culture, the evolution of Idish literature in Eastern
Europe, the emancipation of Idish to become a state Judaic language in
Eastern Europe and especially in Austro-Hungary. The Lecturers in
Romania talked about the Idish literature in this country during the
communist regime and about idis culture during the Holocaust.
The closing festivity took place at State Jewish Theatre with the
musical "Vinzatorul de visuri” (Dreams hunter), by Salom Alehem.

Between April 10 and 28, in the theatre foyer it is opened a documentary
exhibition upon Idish life in Romania. The selection of photos coming
from the collection of Munchen Municipal Museum was accomplished by
Edmund Hofer.
Author: DIVERS


ROMANIAN GOVERNMENT SUED BY ETHNIC RUSSIAN

BUCHAREST - The Ethnic Russian Association of Romania (AERR) said they
are going to sue the Romanian government at the European Court for Human
Rights (ECHR) for disregarding their rights as a minority to run on
separate candidates' lists for the general elections in November 2004.

The Juridical Resource Center is providing AEER with legal consultancy
in this matter. The two organizations state in a press release that the
Central Elections Bureau (BEC)'s decision to reject AERR's request to
participate in the electoral process is illegal and seriously affected
the ethnic Russian minority living in Romania.

The law says that, in order to take part in the election process, the
national minorities' organizations represented in the National Minority
Council (CNM) are to forward signature lists comprising at least 15% of
the total number of citizens who at the last census affirmed their
belonging to that specific minority." The results of the 2002 population
census reveal that 6,721 Romanian citizens belong to the Russian
minority and it is different from the Lipovenian minority which numbers
29,070 people added the quoted source.

According to the same source, the Elections Central Bureau and the High
Court Of Cassation and Justice's decision to deny a separate election
list for the AERR candidates since these institutions acknowledge only
the existence of a Russian-Lipovenian ethnic minority (essentially
combining the two groups), ignoring the existence of a distinct Russian
minority.

According the BEC and the court, "the AERR should have handed in a
nominal list with at least 15% of the combined Russian-Lipovenian ethnic
population, not a separate list of the total of ethnic Russians."
"By taking these decisions, the Romanian state is indulging in a
discriminatory practice against the Russian minority, limiting one of
its fundamental rights - electing ethnic representatives," says the
press release.
The Ethnic Russian Association of Romania will solicit moral
compensations from the Romanian state in its complaint forwarded to the
European Court of Human Rights. 
Author: DIVERS


HUNGARIANS IN ROMANIA WELCOME EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT DECISION REGARDING EU
ENLARGEMENT

BUCHAREST - In the last fifteen years, Romania’s integration into the
Euro-Atlantic structures has been an outstanding objective of the
Hungarian Democratic Union in Romania (UDMR).

It is our conviction that accession to the European Union is the primary
condition for the country’s economic and political advance and for the
establishment of full-fledged democracy.

Romania’s adaptation to the European Union as soon as possible is also
the primary interest of the Hungarian community in Romania, since this
would open the way to new opportunities for the Hungarian community. We
Hungarians consider it very important that Romania and Hungary belong to
the same political and economic structures and are thus closer to each
other since, following accession, the various Hungarian communities can
be together in the European Union unhindered and without boundaries.

With the positive vote of the European Parliament on the Treaty of
Accession with Romania, this day is a decisive momentum on the country’s
way to integration, since—as we see it—the integration process has thus
become irreversible for Romania.

UDMR welcomes the decision of the European Parliament and it shall
continue to do everything so that Romania meets the conditions included
in the Accession Treaty and will thus enter the common Europe in January
2007. 
Author: DIVERS


CNS HAS A NEW AUTONOMY PROJECT OF THE SZECKLER’S COUNTY

COVASNA – Standing Council of the National Szeckler’s County submitted
on April 10 the Parliament of Romania, for the second time, a
legislative proposal enabling the establishment of the legal framework
to re-establish the so-called ''Szeckler’s County'', made up of counties
Covasna, Harghita and a part of Mures.

Two amendments on the status of the ethnic Hungarians minority in
Romania were subjected to the vote of the European Parliament (EP)
during April 13 session. According to the president of the National
Szeckler’s County (CNS) Csapo Jozsef, the two amendments passed from the
vote of the Commission for Foreign Business of the European Parliament
and were acknowledged by the rapporteur for Romania Pierre Moscovici.

Former UDMR senator Csapo Jozsef stated the two amendments directly
concern the status of ethnic Hungarians in Covasna, Harghita and Mures
area, namely the right of this community to self-governing,
self-management and self-administration. “The amendments expressly
advise the authorities to take into account the natives’ desire to get
by law, the competences, the powers and the institutions necessary to
accomplish the territorial autonomy”, stated CNS chairman.

According to him, after the enactment of the two documents by the plenum
of the EP, CNS will resume the procedure to introduce the law draft on
the autonomy of the Szeckler’s County within the debate of the European
Parliament, project rejected last year, in a first attempt. In parallel,
CNS will send the project to be analyzed and eventually supported by the
Government of Romania, where he hopes to find support to promote it in
the Parliament, after the European vote. Another argument, which CNS
hopes the Romanian authorities take into account, is the current
organization of the development regions disadvantaging the Szeckler’s
County. “In order to access European funds for development, the current
regions that have no juridical status must be reorganized. A Szeckler
compact region with 809,000 inhabitants, out of whom 613,000 (76%) are
ethnic Hungarians, has more chances to take part in the funds of
development than in the current form of the Development Region Centre
VII, which also includes counties Alba, Brasov and Sibiu, with a weight
of ethnic Hungarian population of 29%”, also said Csapo Jozsef. 
Author: DIVERS


ROMANIAN-HUNGARIAN DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL PRESENTS ITS AWARDS

SFINTU GHEORGHE - The second Romanian-Hungarian documentary festival
took place between April 6-9 in Sfintu Gheorghe (central Romania). The
festival's Great Award went to "The Hedgehog's Curse" by Dumitru
Budrala. The award for best director was won by Alexandru Solomon for
his "Great Communist Bank Robbery" and the best image award went to
"Population by Will of God, Population by Will of Man," by Xantus Gabor.
The special award was granted to Zsigmond Deszo for "The Snail City,"
Karman Iren for "Diogenide" and to Fogel Katalin and Baranyi Laura for
"Just Like Little Bees."

The best documentary for television was "Mother and Daughter" by
Szekeres Csaba and the best documentary made by a student - "Nea
Pintea...Model" by Adina Pintilie. 
The competition was organized by the Hungarian Cultural Center in
Bucharest and the Mazsola Film Association and presented a total of 50
films.
Author: DIVERS

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