Romania: Politician scores points by evicting Romani people, building wall
Some in Romania are charging Catalin Chereches with racism. He has erected a wall around the Romani quarter in the town of Baia Mare and evicted some of the families living there into run-down communist-era buildings.
Others are celebrating Chereches. He has become Romania's most popular politician, and his inroads into popularity show how poor economic outlooks and poverty in Central Europe can kindle radical solutions.
The 33-year-old mayor studied economics in Vienna. He claims he is doing his best to aid the poverty-stricken Romani inhabitants of Baia Mare, but human rights organizations accuse him of establishing a ghetto and deteriorating the situation.
The Romani families were evicted from a slum where naked children once played in the dirt with feral cats and dogs. In their new residences they continue to live separated from the rest of the population as they did before, in overcrowded apartments without functioning bathrooms.
Read the entire article (in Czech only) at http://aktualne.centrum.cz/zahranici/evropa/clanek.phtml?id=750834.
For more information on Baia Mare in English, please see http://www.aedh.eu/AEDH-condemns-the-forced-eviction.html