MINELRES: ERTF: Europe celebrates its 50th birthday: For Roma no time to party

minelres@lists.microlink.lv minelres@lists.microlink.lv
Tue Mar 27 08:05:27 2007


Original sender: European Roma and Travellers Forum <ertf@coe.int> 


Europe celebrates its 50th birthday: For Roma no time to party 

European Roma and Travellers Forum 
Press Release 


Europe celebrates its 50th birthday: For Roma no time to party 

Strasbourg, 25 March 2007: On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of
the Treaty of Rome which has laid the groundwork for the common Europe,
the president of the European Roma and Travellers Forum, Rudko
Kawczynski, said that for Roma Europe was still to be realised.

“Today, Europe celebrates, and as a genuinely European people which has
suffered so much from wars in Europe Roma would be fools if they would
not support the European idea.”, Kawczynski said. He pointed out that
the European Union and the Commission as its executive arm have
contributed a lot to improving the living conditions of Roma in the
former communist states, but he underlined that still much has to be
done until full equality is achieved. 

“We are today witnessing the absurd situation where people have many
rights on paper, but no means to actually achieve them,” Kawczynski said
underlining that Roma are often unaware about their rights or the
possibilities to report abuses. He also pointed out that the EU has
created new divisions between Roma who are members of EU countries and
those who are not.

The president of the European Roma and Travellers Forum quoted the cold
welcome made to Roma refugees from the new member states. “As a result
of their country becoming member of the EU, Roma are immediately
forcibly repatriated even if everyone is aware that discrimination and
Human rights violations against Roma continue unabated.”, he added.

Rudko Kawzcynski also pointed out at the suicide of Marin Mogos, a
deported Roma refugee, at the Bucharest airport where he had been
staying five years out of fear of persecution in Romania. “It is a
particular irony that this man died at the moment, when his country
entered into the European Union and a few days ahead the celebrations.”,
the president of the European Roma and Travellers Forum commented. 

The European Roma and Travellers Forum is the international Romani
interest representation which gathers Europe’s main international Roma
organisations and more than 1,500 member organisations from most of the
Council of Europe member states. In December 2004, the Forum signed a
partnership agreement with the Council of Europe which provides for
special relations between both organisations.


Evropako Forumo e Romengo thaj e Phirutnengo (EFRP) 
Forum europeen des Roms et des Gens du voyage (FERV) 
European Roma and Travellers Forum (ERTF) 

c/o Conseil de l'Europe / Council of Europe 
F - 67075 Strasbourg 

Tel.: + 33 (0)3 90 21 53 50 
Fax: + 33 (0)3 90 21 44 34 
E-mail: ertf@ertf.org or ertf@coe.int 
http://ertf.org


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