Prague has no problems with minorities, youth unrest - mayor
Prague has not yet faced serious problems with the unrest of ethnic minorities and radical youth, unlike some other European cities, Prague Mayor Pavel Bem said at a conference held by the British Council and the Forum 2000 foundation today.
Bem added that most troubles can arise because certain groups have no equal access to the labour market or sufficient alternatives of spending their free time.
Prague has persistent problems with "hidden crime committed by some groups of inhabitants," Bem said.
"One of the most significant measures against discontent of minorities and youth is the offer of new jobs," Bem stressed, added that Prague City Hall created some 300 new jobs for Romanies, but it is not enough yet.
The authority is also preparing cultural and sport activities, mainly at modern housing estates and problem localities, and it is monitoring drug problems and crime connected with drugs.
Participants in the conference on the radicalisation of youth and minorities in cities agreed that certain groups' discontent is provoked mainly by their bad financial situation.
Radicalisation is connected with economic crises and unemployment, said Brussels deputy mayor Faouzia Hariche.
She added that the education system classifying inhabitants into groups at schools already is to blame for the situation. Troubles are also triggered by the discriminatory approach of police and courts, she added.
Brussels applies positive discrimination and it has established the Centre for Equal Opportunities to solve the problems, Hariche noted.
The municipal authority in Manchester is trying to modernise schools and it has launched programmes in which young people learn mutual respect, former Manchester mayor Muhammad Khan said.
According to a U.N. research presented at the conference, about 60 percent of world inhabitants are to live in large cities by 2030.
Mainly young people move to cities, but they more and more often fail to find jobs. Some 18 percent of young people are unemployed in the EU on average, while the share is higher among foreign immigrants.
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