MINELRES: Romania: Bulletin DIVERS on Ethnic Minorities no. 35 (231) / October 2, 2006

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Divers Bulletin no. 35 (231) / October 2, 2006

News

EUROPEAN COMMISSION STILL WORRIED ABOUT SITUATION OF ETHNIC MINORITIES
IN ROMANIA 
ROMANIA TO PROMOTE THE LAW ON ROMANIANS FROM DIASPORA 
MAGISTRATES TO ATTEND COURSES AGAINST DISCRIMINATION 
NEW SANITARY MEDIATORS FOR ETHNIC ROMA COMMUNITIES IN SOUTHERN ROMANIA 
CIVIC FORUM OF ETHNIC HUNGARIAN ORGANIZATIONS 
WELL-KNOWN HUNGARIAN WRITER SUTO ANDRAS DIES 

 
News

EUROPEAN COMMISSION STILL WORRIED ABOUT SITUATION OF ETHNIC MINORITIES
IN ROMANIA  
BRUSSELS - The European Commission's country report on Romania,
published on September 26, evaluating the progress registered by Romania
and Bulgaria on the accession to the European Commission, corroborated
the two countries' accession to the EU early January 2007. The report
accounts for a limited progress in the field of ethnic minorities'
protection. For example, the report said "Some worries still exist"
related to the ethnic Roma situation.

The report noticed that Romanian Parliament still discusses the draw law
on the statute of the ethnic minorities and the settlement of principles
of equality, non-discrimination and multi-culturality. This legislative
process should be closely monitored. 

The new national plan for labor force recruitment passed in August 2006,
ensures actions concentrated on minorities, including the ethnic Roma.
The law to prevent and punish all forms of discrimination was amended to
meet the European standards on the independence of the National Council
to Fight Discrimination, or CNCD, according to the report. 

The administrative capability of the National Agency for Ethnic Roma
improved once with the development of its regional offices. The agency
started to implement projects of community development which could bring
about a significant and steady contribution to the improvement of ethnic
Roma status.
Some worries still exist on this issue.

The projects are slowly implemented. The social inclusion of the ethnic
Roma remains a structural problem. The general living conditions are
still inadequate. The measures for labor force recruitment should be
subsequently developed and implemented. Adequate resources for ethnic
Roma strategies and policies are not always ensured, especially at a
local level. The Romanian authorities have not yet proved that zero
tolerance policies are enforced on racism against the ethnic Roma
population. 

Romania still accounts for cases of institutional violence against the
ethnic Roma and aggressions against them, as well as police raids and
evacuations of ethnic Roma without ensuring alternative dwellings. The
level of awareness of ethnic Roma situation and of the government
strategy to improve the ethnic Roma situation, especially at the level
of local communities, is very low.

The local authorities should be supported in drawing up projects on
community development and should bring solutions in the issue of
legitimacy of the locations and other issues. The institutional
framework to implement the National Strategy for ethnic Roma is not
enough efficient and aims to diminish the decision-making capability of
the National Agency for Ethnic Roma, or ANR, and of the ethnic Roma
representatives for efficiently taking part in decision-making process
in the relevant fields. Romania's preparations in this field should be
speeded up and continued after the accession. (DIVERS)


ROMANIA TO PROMOTE THE LAW ON ROMANIANS FROM DIASPORA
NEW YORK - Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs aims to promote and
enact two normative acts, the Law on Romanians from diaspora and the Law
on the vote by mail, to toughen the connection between the ethnic Roma
in the Diaspora with their country of origin, according to the minister
of Foreign Affairs, Mihai Razvan Ungureanu.

"We are interested that any Romanian ethnic or person belonging to
Romanian culture can benefit from facilities in the relation with the
country of origin", Ungureanu said last week, during a meeting with the
Romanian press in USA.

"The law of Romanians everywhere will protect the minorities in the
Romanian neighboring countries and will complement the actions of the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which protect their interests", Ungureanu
also said.

"This would be the first such law in Romania, after several successive
projects," said Ungureanu, saying the draft law "passed all the exams of
the European juridical court," and might be enacted and promulgated by
year-end. Some 1,600,000 Romanians are currently living abroad. (DIVERS)

MAGISTRATES TO ATTEND COURSES AGAINST DISCRIMINATION 
BUCHAREST - Superior Magistracy Council, or CSM, introduced courses on
fighting discrimination for the magistrates, as of 2007, reported most
important journals. 

Ethnic Roma Center for Social Intervention and Studies- Romani, or
CRISS, submitted CSM on July 7, the proposal to expand the training and
improving courses for magistrates in the field of international
legislation and case law ECHR, as well as in international legislation
and national case-law in the field of nondiscrimination. 

This proposal aims to harmonize the Reform Strategy of the judicial
system 2005-2007 with the European requirements, namely the standards of
the European Commission and of ECRI - European Commission against Racism
and Intolerance. 

After having analyzed some 150 cases of human rights breach and
discrimination of ethnic Roma citizens, it was concluded the courts
enforced the law in a non-unitary manner. The courts often passed
different solutions in similar cases. 

Romani CRISS says the inaccurate enforcement of the law comes from an
insufficient knowledge of the anti-discrimination legislation, with
prejudice against the members of the ethnic Roma community. 

The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance, or ECRI,
insisted upon the fact the Romanian authorities make a review of the
judicial system to settle the ethnic Roma discrimination in justice and
asked the Romanian authorities to continue holding these courses within
the National Magistracy Institute. 
National Magistracy Institute agreed with this proposal, drawing up the
program in the field of fighting discrimination by taking into account
the international recommendations and documents. 

A symposium on discrimination was organized during May 25 and 26, 2006
and the National Magistracy Institute will hold another seminar in
Bucharest, during October 12 and 13, 2006, attended by 30 judges and
prosecutors. (DIVERS)

NEW SANITARY MEDIATORS FOR ETHNIC ROMA COMMUNITIES IN SOUTHERN ROMANIA 
BUCHAREST - Nineteen new sanitary mediators in Ilfov and Mehedinti
counties took part in a three-day course organized by the Public Health
Authority in collaboration with the non-governmental organization
Rromani Criss and financed by UN's Fund for Population, or UNFPA. 

The authorities approved the new positions, and the mediators were
subsequently elected and recommended by the community. The number of the
sanitary mediators increased from 2 to 17 positions in Ilfov county, in
the past two years, which triggered an increase of the health level in
the communities.

The course, which took place at the Buftea Family Health Center ends
with an exam testing the abilities learned during the three-day course.
The pupils learn from trainer Daniel Radulescu with Rromani Criss, about
the mission and role of the sanitary mediator, about the importance of a
standing communication with the members of the community and of the
collaboration with the community health team. 

The community health team is made up of family medics, community medical
nurses and sanitary mediators with every commune. They make sure that
all persons receive all the need they can get, as the mediators and the
nurses know each case in particular. The sanitary mediators enable the
communication between the ethnic Roma patients and the medical
personnel, so that the different cultural background does not stand in
the way of medical nursing.

The same program financed by the UN's Fund for Population also trained
in August twelve communitarian medical nurses in Ilfov and Mehedinti.
The twelve person learned communication techniques with the patients to
become more efficient in their daily activities, especially in
convincing the patients to take the medic's treatments, to have a
preventive behavior and to ask for medical nursing in useful time.

The United Nations Population Fund, or UNFPA, through the Institute for
Mother and Child Protection "Alfred Rusescu", develops in 2004 projects
for community medical services in counties Ilfov and Mehedinti. With the
financial support of UNFPA and of Canadian International Development
Agency, or CIDA, community medical nurses and sanitary mediators were
trained and collaboration methods were settled with the family medics
and with the local authorities. (DIVERS)

CIVIC FORUM OF ETHNIC HUNGARIAN ORGANIZATIONS 
CLUJ-NAPOCA - Between October 13 and 14, Foundation of Ethnic Hungarian
Civil Organization in Transylvania will hold the 8th edition of the
Civil Forum for the non-governmental ethnic Hungarian organizations in
Transylvania, in the Charity Center "Bethlen Kata". This year's
conference pertains to mobilization of all resources in the community
and to the support of the non-governmental organizations. 

The conference is called "Attracting funds and mobilizing communitarian
resources" and aims to enable the relations between the non-governmental
organizations of the ethnic Hungarian minority and of the majority. The
forum's workshops include the following topics: Human resources are an
important factor in the non-governmental sector, Non-governmental
organizations and income-generating activities, Collaboration between
the NGOs and the business environment, Mobilization of resources within
the community, Stipulation 1-2%, PR with the non-governmental
organizations, Cooperation between local authorities and NGOs. (DIVERS)

WELL-KNOWN HUNGARIAN WRITER SUTO ANDRAS DIES 
BUDAPEST - Writer Suto Andras, the best known Hungarian victim of the
inter-ethnic conflict that took place in March 1990 in Targu Mures, died
last week in Budapest. According to the writer's son-in-law Cselenyi
Laszlo, the president of Duna television, Suto died in a hospital after
a long suffering.

Suto was one of the best known Romanian authors writing in Hungarian. He
was born June 17, 1927. Together with Mihaila Cofariu, he was one of the
best known victims of the Romanian - Hungarian inter-ethnic conflict.
The footage in which Cofariu was savagely beaten in the center of the
city circulated around the world. During the conflict Suto lost an eye. 

The events that took place on March 19-20, 1990 in Targu Mures claimed
278 victims, of which 190 were Romanian and 88 were Hungarian. 

Five people died during the conflict - three Hungarians and two
Romanians. Twenty-one people were arrested and 30 were sent to trial,
most of them convicted to serve one year in prison. The direst
punishments (10 years in jail) were received by Barabas Erno, who is
currently seeking a pardon for the third time from Hungary, where he
received political asylum and Csereznyes Pal, who was pardoned in 1996
by former president Emil Constantinescu. (DIVERS)


DIVERS - News bulletin about ethnic minorities living in Romania is
edited every week by Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, with the
financial support of King Baudouin Foundation, Belgium and Ethnocultural
Diversity Resource Center. Partial or full reproduction of the
information contained in DIVERS is allowed only if the source is
mentioned. You can send messages and suggestions regarding the content
of DIVERS bulletin at Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, at the
e-mail address:
marian@birn.eu.com

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