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Open letter from expatriate Roma in England and international organizations to the Government of the Czech Republic

London, 3.8.2013 21:35, (ROMEA)
The Romani flag.
The Romani flag.

On the occasion of the International Day of the Roma Holocaust, Romani associations and initiatives based in England and elsewhere have sent the following letter to the Government of the Czech Republic in response to growing anti-Romani sentiment there. News server Romea.cz publishes the letter in full translation below:

Dear Government of the Czech Republic,

The situation in which antigypsyist, neo-Nazi crusades are being carried out in the Czech Republic is unsustainable and very dangerous. As civic associations and initiatives, and as Romani individuals living in the UK, we have decided to call upon you, the Government of the Czech Republic, to do something about it. 

We do not hesitate to express the opinion that the previous government under former Prime Minister Petr Nečas was, in our view, a government that concentrated on the personal satisfaction of its members and their own profits instead of on civic problems, to which it dedicated a minimum of attention. During the entire time that cabinet was in office, not the slightest reversal ever took place to calm the situation. On the contrary, we all had the feeling that some politicians in high places were "mining" the ethnic tension for all it was worth.

We are also of the opinion that this escalating anti-Romani sentiment has been artificially instigated in order to distract attention away from other political events, as well as to shore up the careers of xenophobic senators who are "betting" on the antigypsy card. It is precisely the fault of the previous government that the situation is becoming more and more dangerous and escalating daily. 

We are Romani people who have left the Czech Republic for various reasons. Most of us left because of racist assaults against our own families and those of other Romani people. We have chosen Great Britain as the place to spend the rest of our lives, but we have never stopped following events in the Czech Republic as the situation of Romani people there grows more and more serious.

Those Romani people who remember the 1930s cannot help but compare that time to today's reality. Often they evaluate our position today as even worse now than it was then. They can never forget what the Czech guards were capable of doing to our families in the Nazi concentration camps of Lety by Písek and Hodonín by Kunštát.

Dear Government of the Czech Republic, we are turning to you as an expression of trust, because we believe that, just like us, you are following these events with concern, that you perceive the currently exacerbated relationships between people from the majority part of  society and the Romani national minority. You see how various groups promoting neo-Nazi ideas are doing their best to take advantage of the broader population under the pretext of responding to various negative, pathological incidents - even ones that are invented and never actually happened. We are witnessing the fact that untrue information is being spread, for example, about the amount of welfare awarded to unemployed Romani families. We are watching in disbelief how easily part of society is allowing itself to be manipulated by extremists and neo-Nazis into hunting down Romani families. That has been demonstrated by the situation in České Budějovice and elsewhere.

It is evident that unless a highly-placed politician publicly calls on the nation to restrain itself, these manifestations of intolerance will be repeated with even greater intensity in other parts of the republic. We believe that you have the opportunity and the power to speak to all citizens irrespective of their differences. 

Please consider whether the time has not arrived for you to publicly speak out and reduce tensions in society through the weight of your personages. The citizens will definitely receive such a move on your part with comprehension and gratitude.

We are also placing a great deal of trust in President Miloš Zeman. We believe he will dedicate himself to this issue as well, which is no longer "merely" a problem of just one region, but has become dangerous for all of Czech society.

With respect and trust,

    Halifax Roma Group (HRG)
    EuropeRoma
    Roma Virtual Network (RVN)
    Dale Farm
    IRR
    ERRC
    ARFT
    AI
    Refugee Forum - NC
    Roma North East
    Roma Community Care (RCC)

bau, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
Views: 671x

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Anticiganismus, dopis vládě, Romové, situace ve společnosti, Velká Británie, Vláda, zprávy, Aktivismus, koncentrační tábor, Korupce, neonacista, nepokoje, Nenávist, Občanská společnost, Občanské iniciativy, občanské sdružení, Památný den romského holocaustu, Romská reprezentace, Romská hrdost, romské oběti nacismu, sociální politika vlády, Šíření nenávisti a nesnášenlivosti, Amnesty International, Czech republic, Extremism, genocide, History, Neo-Nazism, news, Racism, Roma, Šikana, UK, world



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