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August 11, 2022



Czech Republic's second-largest city to see refugee camp installed, apparently for more Romani refugees from Ukraine

2.6.2022 14:19
The refugee camp being built near Brno, Czech Republic (1 June 2022). (PHOTO:  HZS Jihomoravský kraj)
The refugee camp being built near Brno, Czech Republic (1 June 2022). (PHOTO: HZS Jihomoravský kraj)

The Regional Authority in South Moravia, Czech Republic has begun to build a refugee camp near Brno's Masaryk Circuit racetrack that should be ready by tomorrow afternoon. About 60 refugees from Ukraine, most of whom are Romani, should find shelter there temporarily, but according to Regional Governor Jan Grolich, those who have been sleeping at Brno's main railway station will not be among them.

"This accommodation is for the short term, temporarily for people whose citizenship Hungary has to vet, which usually takes two days," news server quoted the Regional Governor as saying. "Just to explain, this small town is not serving for the accommodation of the people who are sometimes to be found in front of the railway station."

"Frequently, the people there have drawn their benefits and then decided to return home, there are citizens of other EU countries there with them, or people who rejected the accommodation offered them here. We cannot do much about this from the level of the Regional Authority," Grolich alleged. 

"We will not be offering more accomodation," he emphasized. For the Brno camp, firefighters are using what is being called IKEA tiny house technology.

"A house can be built in about three and a half hours by six men or women. We decided to work on the underpinnings to increase their comfort, the houses will have wooden floors," said Jiří Pelikán, director of the firefighters in South Moravia.

IQ Roma servis, a nonprofit organization working with local Roma, will be at the camp with interpreters and will provide advice to the refugees about social services on the spot. "I want to really appreciate this nonprofit because they are not critical - they don't just talk, they aid those who need it most," said the Regional Governor.

Karel Abraham, a businessman, owns the land where the camp is being built, which fans of racing are charged high prices to occupy in season; the conclusion of a lease with the landowner is expected to happen at the end of September, according to the Regional Authority representatives. Grolich admitted that the Regional Authority had considered other locations for the camp, but as soon as they announced it to any of Brno's municipal departments or to villages on the outskirts, protests started after local leadership and residents got wind of the plan.

ČTK, ryz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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