MINELRES: Romani CRISS: Informative note on Roma in Romania

minelres@lists.microlink.lv minelres@lists.microlink.lv
Fri Aug 25 09:09:07 2006


Original sender: Cezara David <cezara@romanicriss.org>


Romani CRISS
Roma Center for Social Intervention and Studies

19, Buzesti Street, Sector 1
Bucharest – Romania
Tel: 004 021 / 231 41 44
Fax: 004 021/ 310 70 70
E-mail: criss@romanicriss.org
www.romanicriss.org 
 

Romani CRISS has started a series of informative notes regarding the
situation of Roma minority in Romania, in terms of human rights
respecting. 

This initiative aims to provide succinct information, shortly after the
documenting of a case. For further details on the cases, please contact
Romani CRISS. 

INFORMATIVE NOTE

Piatra Neamt, Neamt county

On the 7th of August 2006, the Piatra Neamt municipality evicted a
number of 35 Roma families (approximately 250 people) from the 40 block,
at Ulmilor St. in Piatra Neamt. The total population of the apartment
block is 91 families, preponderantly of Roma ethnicity. 

Although it was raining outside, the City hall representatives left the
evicted people’s belongings outside, in the rain and only after the
Romani CRISS representatives had told them to ensure a storage place for
these belongings, as per the current laws, they took the necessary
measures to store the goods in a room owned by the Community Police in
block no.40. 

At the meeting with the City hall with Vice-Mayor Vasile Oatu, Romani
CRISS reported the fact that approximately 25 people don’t have a roof
above their head and asked for solutions to be identified, but the City
hall representatives showed they had no solutions for the evicted
persons. 

Numerous law enforcement officials participated in the eviction process,
including the Community Police, the Gendarmery and the Piatra Neamt city
Police. 

A Roma woman claims to have been physically abused by a representative
of the community police during the evacuation process. The women,
seconded by eye-witnesses claims the community police officer has
grabbed her neck with his hands and he has pushed her against the wall,
thus hitting the wall with her head. 

Some of the inhabitants had previously received summons to leave the
block due to rehabilitation by ANL - National Agency for Housing
program. 

No serious analysis of the legal and social situation of the persons in
question has been conducted by the municipality. The evacuation was
carried out in a total chaos, where the City hall representatives had no
clear criteria based on which they pursued the evacuation; one of their
reasons was the inhabitants’ delays in paying the bills (electricity,
heat, etc), but no notice in this regard had been sent to the people in
question. 

Despite the dialogue of the personal adviser of the Prime Minister’s
Office on Roma Issues, Romani CRISS and „Romii Romascani” association –
Neamt with the City Hall representatives and despite the informal
promises that alternative housing will be provided, the representatives
of the municipality, have said that alternative housing could not be
provided as the conditions were improper (the roof is damaged).

The evicted Roma are determined to organize a march of protest in the
following period. 

These events are not a singular case in the city’s recent history;
similar events have been reported since 2001. Other city halls have had
similar initiatives and moved Roma from the locality to the outskirts of
the locality, which, in fact, represents residential segregation. 


Bontida, Cluj County

On 03.08.2006, the Bontida police and Cluj gendarmerie have conducted an
action in Bontida village, Cluj County. According to the Roma, 5 Roma
individuals have been physically abused by the gendarmerie. Two of the
five were minor of age. The 5 individuals have been taken to the local
police station; three of them claim having been beaten in the
gendarmerie van, and the other two in the police station. So far, three
of them have obtained medical certificates. The Roma also declare that
for the 30 minutes the two individuals were abused in the police
station, the parents have not been permitted access to their minor
children, despite legal obligation for the law enforcement officials to
do so. Only afterwards, have the parents been granted access to the
police station. The head of Bontida village Police claims that the
gendarmerie has stated that there has been no abuse. 

The case has been documented by Romani CRISS, in partnership with Romano
Suno association - Cluj. 

In this case, Romani CRISS will assist the victims in lodging a criminal
complaint to the Prosecutor’s Office within the Cluj Military Court of
Law under the accusation of abuse behavior of the gendarmes in question. 


3. Pata Rat – Cluj, Cluj County

In 02.08.2006, representatives of the Cluj-Napoca City Hall and the
community police burnt down 10 Roma shacks, located on the garbage dump
in Pata Rat. According to the declarations of the Roma, the community
police participating in the action have also physically abused three
Roma women, one of they having been slapped and the other two aggressed
with an electrical device. Despite legal and political initiatives
assumed at the central level in regard to the improvement of Roma
condition, the local authorities in Cluj-Napoca have relapsed into
misbehavior. 

Also, in November 2005, in case of Pata Rat – Cluj County[1], a criminal
complaint has been lodged to the Prosecutor’s Office against police
officers for the felony of abusive behavior, bodily harm, threatening
and destruction. The local authorities are, ignorantly or mens rea,
failing to identify a legal and pro-active solution to solve the
problems that Roma face. Instead, they repeatedly abuse Roma. 

The case has been documented by Romani CRISS, in partnership with Romano
Suno association - Cluj.

Romani CRISS, in partnership with the National Agency for Roma, Romano
Suno and Amare Phrala will organize a meeting with the Cluj-Napoca
Mayoralty, other local and central institutions, and non-governmental
organisations in order to identify solutions for the on-going problem of
the Pata Rat community.  

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[1] In November 2005, approximately 80 police officers and special
intervention forces organized two raids in the Pata Rat community. These
actions resulted in the injuring of at least 5 Roma people and the
burning down of 15 Roma houses. The Pata Rat community is placed on the
garbage dump of Cluj Napoca municipality, where the Roma are building
themselves houses, with the tacit agreement of the City
Hall.

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