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Romanian Senate rejects bill to officially rename Roma "Gypsies"

Bucharest, 10.2.2011 13:57, (ROMEA)

The Romanian Senate has voted down a bill to officially rename the Roma minority "Gypsies". Romanian press agency Mediafax reports senators voted 51 against the bill and 27 in favor, with five abstentions.

The bill claimed the change was needed because of the similarity between the name of the country of Romania ("Romania" in Romanian) and that of the Roma ("Romi" in Romanian). It also argued that the term "Gypsies" ("Tsigani" in Romanian) is more widespread in the country. The Associated Press reports that two parliamentary committees endorsed the change last week.

Roma associations did not like the idea from the start, as they consider the label of "Gypsies" to be abusive. In their view the term labels the Roma as a nation that is poor, rootless and uneducated.

Gwendolyn Albert, Zdeněk Ryšavý, ryz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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