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January 22, 2018
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Tereza Heková


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The pig farm at Lety u Písku, Czech Republic (2017). (PHOTO: Petr Zewlakk Vrabec)
The pig farm at Lety u Písku, Czech Republic (2017). (PHOTO: Petr Zewlakk Vrabec)

Czech Culture Minister: Buyout of pig farm was important, human dignity cannot be measured in money

19.1.2018 7:31 News server Novinky.cz published an interview on 17 January with Czech Culture Minister Ilja Šmíd in which he said he agrees with the amount of money paid to buy out the pig farm in Lety u Písku that stands on the site of a former concentration camp for Romani people because this was an important step and human dignity cannot be measured in monetary terms. "The last Government made that decision and I am convinced it was absolutely correct as far as the amount paid to buy the farm," the minister said.

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Czech pro-Kremlin disinformation Facebook page sparks wave of racist, vulgar comments about non-white infant

13.1.2018 11:04 News server Aktuálně.cz reports that police in Třinec, Czech Republic are investigating racist comments made online against a male infant whose parents have Czech-Vietnamese and Kurdish roots. The commentaries were posted to the xenophobic Facebook page WeAreHereAtHome, which has renamed itself Zprávy.cz and purports to publish serious news reporting.  full story

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Czech Green Party co-chair wants Interior Ministry to dissolve the "Freedom and Direct Democracy" Movement

3.1.2018 10:55 News server Info.cz reported last week that Ondřej Mirovský, co-chair of the Czech Republic's Green Party, has said he wants to ask the Interior Ministry to dissolve Tomio Okamura's "Freedom and Direct Democracy" Movement (SPD). Mirovský made the decision after Okamura invited extremist politicians from all over Europe to Prague.
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Czech Republic: Romani children's grades improve after joining floorball teams

3.1.2018 10:23 Last week the Czech daily Mostecký deník reported that Romani children attending a primary school that serves the Chánov housing estate have begun to dedicate themselves to the sport of floorball. They play after school twice a week.  full story

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Greek court sentences woman who kicked Romani girl on the street to three months in prison

3.1.2018 7:12 News server Keep Talking Greece reports that a woman who assaulted a young Romani girl on the streets of Athens four years ago has finally been convicted and sentenced to three months behind bars. The incident happened on 17 September 2013 when the woman saw the seven-year-old sit down on the sidewalk of Dionisiou Aeropagitoy Street, which leads to the Acropolis, and begin playing the accordion.  full story

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Czech Republic: Families of children targeted with online hate spend Christmas in the mountains thanks to generous donor

26.12.2017 9:17 Children attending the Plynárenská Primary School in Teplice, Czech Republic are spending Christmas together with their families in the Krkonoše Mountains this year after hotelier Alexandr Bílek offered them a free stay in the resort town of Špindlerův Mlýn. The businessman decided to organize the gift because he disagrees with the racist attacks committed online against the children and their parents, and he wanted to make the situation more pleasant for them.  full story

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Czech Republic: International student conference on "European Roma Identity in the 20th Century"

11.12.2017 6:41 From 7-9 December 2017 a student conference entitled "European Roma Identity in the 20th Century" took place in Prague at the Scout Institute. The event was organized by Antikomplex and the Terezín Initiative Institute in collaboration with other partners in a project of the same name.  full story

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Czech President will address national convention of xenophobic SPD party

8.12.2017 7:18 Czech President Miloš Zeman will attend the convention of the "Freedom and Direct Democracy" (SPD) party tomorrow. He is planning to give a speech there.  full story

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Hungary: Romani duo from Slovakia win the "X Factor" music competition

1.12.2017 6:57 The Romani singing duo Claudia and Ricco, who are originally from Slovakia, have won the "X Factor" music competition in Hungary. The magnificent finale to the famous television show was broadcast Saturday.  full story

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Czech sociologist: We must face down xenophobia by supporting those who are intimidated

30.11.2017 9:30 Former Czech MP Ivan Gabal, who is also a well-known sociologist, has been interviewed by the Czech online broadcaster DVTV, describing to reporter Martin Veselovský why he decided to initiate the fundraising drive in support of the Romani and other children at a school in Teplice who were recently attacked online - "THEY WANT TO GAS THEM, WE WANT TO SEND THEM TO SCHOOL!" ("ONI JE DO PLYNU. MY JE DO ŠKOL!"). In his view it is important to support children and their parents when they become the targets of xenophobic attacks.  full story

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Czech NGOs call on incoming PM not to jettison cabinet post for human rights

29.11.2017 7:01 NGOs in the Czech Republic have written an open letter to Andrej Babiš, who has been entrusted by the Czech President with forming a new Government after last month's lower house elections, calling on him not to close down the post of Human Rights Minister. His ANO movement, which was the favorite in the recent elections, proposed abolishing the position in its electoral program.  full story

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Czech sociologist: Racist online calls to gas children are unacceptable

25.11.2017 19:55 According to sociologist Ivan Gabal it is unacceptable for Internet users to call for children to be gassed because they are of a different ethnicity, nationality or race. That is the reason he has initiated the campaign called THEY WANT TO GAS THEM, WE WANT TO SEND THEM TO SCHOOL! (ONI JE DO PLYNU. MY JE DO ŠKOL!) and together with the ROMEA organization and in collaboration with other organizations and public figures is calling for donations in support of the Romani Scholarship Program and in support of the children at the primary school in Teplice that was recently attacked online.  full story

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Romani residents of Czech town, evicted during reconstruction, cannot find landlords to rent to them

24.11.2017 14:56 By the end of March 2018 the town of Děčín will have evicted all of the tenants residing in a building that was once a primary school. Despite the fact that the condominium apartment units are municipally-owned, the tenants are being forced to leave without being offered any replacement accommodation.  full story

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videoVIDEO: Interview with grandson of the Czechoslovak Romani partisan Josef Serinek

15.8.2017 16:08 A Romani hero of the WWII-era anti-Fascist resistance, the partisan Josef Serinek, was remembered at the end of July by those who attended a tree-planting ceremony in his honor in the Vysočina Region that was held at one of the places where he undertook his resistance work. The event was organized by the Black Partisan (Černý partyzán) initiative led by the former Green Party chair and current director of the Ashoka organization in the Czech Republic, Ondřej Liška, who invited Serinek's grandson Zdeněk to speak.  full story

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videoCzech historian from Museum of Romani Culture: Let's discuss what comes after the pig farm is removed from the Roma genocide site

23.7.2017 11:02 If the land on which the pig farm built on the site of a former WWII-era concentration camp for Romani people at Lety is actually bought by the Czech state from the AGPI firm, the Museum of Romani Culture wants to be part of the larger discussion as to what happens next. Dušan Slačka, a historian at the museum, has said so in an interview with news server Romea.cz (shown above with English subtitles - turn them on by clicking the gear icon and choosing "Nastaveni", then "Angličtina").  full story

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videoČeněk Růžička: Pig farm was privatized for CZK 3.5 million, now it's worth hundreds of millions more?

19.7.2017 8:04 According to the chair of the Committee for the Redress of the Roma Holocaust (Výbor pro odškodnění romského holokaustu - VPORH), Čeněk Růžička, it is very good that archeological research has taken place at the site of the former concentration camp for Romani people at Lety u Písku. In an interview for Romea.cz, Růžička said he assumes people will now finally stop doubting whether the camp existed and that its exact position will be determined.  full story

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videoArcheological research confirms most of former concentration camp at Lety is on pig farm land

14.7.2017 7:16 Archeological research is being carried out at the site of the former concentration camp at Lety u Písku aiming to precisely locate the former camp and find any eventual artefacts from the time of its operation. The research has been carried out on just a small part of the camp because the vast majority of its area is located on the grounds of the pig farm owned by the AGPI company.  full story

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Romani fashion designer wins one million Czech crowns, will launch brand

3.7.2017 7:39 Romani fashion designer Pavel Berky has won the competition on the Czech designer reality show "The Way". The main prize of the contest, which ran over the course of the last few months each Saturday on the cable television channel TV Óčko, is one million crowns [EUR 38 000] and the opportunity to develop a fashion brand.

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videoTimea Junghaus for Romea.cz: Romani artists have the potential to create an innovative Romani identity

28.6.2017 10:30 At the beginning of June the grand opening of the European Roma Institute for Arts and Culture (ERIAC) was held in Berlin. News server Romea.cz broadcast the press conference live and filmed this brief interview with its Executive Director, the historian Timea Junghaus, who has aided with the creation of the institute, among other matters.  full story

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videoDirector of the Institute of the Terezín Initiative says story of Czechoslovak Romani partisan could raise awareness of Roma Holocaust

21.6.2017 6:57 Last month a two-day international conference about Romani victims of the Holocaust was held in Prague by the Institute of the Terezín Initiative and the Antikomplex association in collaboration with the ROMEA organization and other partners. Experts on documenting Holocaust victims and on modern history in Central Europe discussed the current state of research in the area of the Roma Holocaust and their experiences with documenting Holocaust victims generally.  full story

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