Sitemap

International Roma Day 2021 Marked In Serbia

‘Zoe’ Becomes the World’s First Named Heat Wave

The heat wave that hit the southern...

Construction Of New Balkan Energy Route Underway

Europe is investing 240 billion euros in...

Schroeder: Russia Wants Negotiated Solution To Ukraine War

Russia wants negotiations to end the war...

Will Chinese President Xi Jinping Extend 10-year Rule

According to experts, Xi Jinping will very...

South Korean Launches 1st Spacecraft To The Moon

South Korea has launched a lunar orbiter that will scout out future landing spots. The satellite launched by SpaceX is...

7th​ August: National Handloom Day

Handloom sector is a symbol of India’s rich and varied cultural heritage. Handloom is an important source of livelihood in...

Minister Of Foreign Affairs Of Serbia Attends Inuguration Of Colombia’s President

The swearing in of Gustavo Petro as Colombia's president was attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of...

Serbia Government Debt 31.3 Billion Euros

At the end of June, Serbia government debt amounted to 31.3 billion euros, which is 53.2 percent of gross...

‘Zoe’ Becomes the World’s First Named Heat Wave

The heat wave that hit the southern part of Spain last week is the first in history to get...

Antigypsyism is an especially persistent, violent, recurrent and commonplace form of racism. Deeper understanding and a more profound acknowledgement and recognition of the way antigypsyism affects the situation of Roma in today’s Europe is necessary in order to take effective measures in tackling this phenomenon.

This was underlined today by participants of the conference organised ahead of the International Roma Day, marked on 8 April, by the Council of Europe Office in Belgrade, in co-operation with the Serbian Ministry of Human and Minority Rights and Social Dialogue, the Embassies of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Republic of Portugal, and with the support of the joint European Union/Council of Europe ROMACTED Programme.

Tobias Flessenkemper, Head of the Council of Europe Office in Belgrade highlighted the importance of the First World Romani Congress, that marks its 50th anniversary this year. “Prejudice-based generalisations about Roma and Travellers and hate speech stir up xenophobia, echoing the sometimes brutal history of repression of Roma in Europe that goes back centuries”, he said. “As we celebrate the International Roma Day, let us commit ourselves to acknowledging the facts of history and addressing current problems. In doing so, we can contribute to a brighter future for Europe’s Roma and Travellers and thus for Europe as a whole”, added Flessenkemper.

H.E. Ambassador Sem Fabrizi, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Serbia pointed out that Roma community is the largest ethnic minority in Europe, but still the most discriminated and marginalised one. “The question of social inclusion of Roma is of particular importance for the process of Serbia’s accession to the EU. It’s an issue that crosscuts several chapters – from human rights, to employment and to social protection. The European Union will continue to be a key partner for the Roma community in all initiatives for ensuring its social inclusion”, he said.

“Progress in the Roma inclusion is visible in almost all segments – from education, housing and employment to health and social care. However, discrimination, stereotypes and prejudices against Roma are still present”, said Pava Čabrilovski, President of the Executive Board of the Roma National Council in Serbia. “I believe that culture and education are the best mechanisms to counteract these negative phenomena”, she said.

Gordana Čomić, Minister of Human and Minority Rights and Social Dialogue of Serbia noted that one cannot ban prejudice but can pass laws that prohibit behavior based on prejudice. “This is where the inclusion of Roma begins”, she added. “This ministry is at the service of all national councils, including the National Council of Roma. We will actively participate in all projects related to Roma inclusion, we will be open to suggestions, remarks, criticism, ideas on how to do something better”, said minister Čomić.

foto: Beta

On behalf of the Presidency of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers, H.E. Thomas Schieb, Ambassador of Germany said: “It is worrying that antigypsyism, the discrimination against Roma and Sinti, is still an issue today. Germany is very committed to combatting this phenomenon in all its forms. We’ve made combatting hate speech and discrimination one of the priorities of our Presidency of the Council of Europe.” As he pointed out, “this fight requires persistent vigilance and engagement, but also better education and concerted efforts to combat the spread of fake-news and populist propaganda. State as well as non-state actors have to play their part.”

“The European Union Strategic Framework included a Council Recommendation on equality, inclusion and participation of Roma, whose negotiations were steered by the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union, leading to its unanimous adoption, last March”, said H.E. Virginia Pina, Ambassador of Portugal, on behalf of Presidency of the Council of the European Union. “It is the responsibility of each country to take stock of the achievements of the previous 50 years, but it is everybody’s duty to support fostering the continuous assessment of the progress achieved, aiming towards improvement of conditions of Roma people”, she added.

Timea Junghaus, Executive Director of the European Roma Institute for Arts and Culture (ERIAC) delivered a keynote speech at the event. “Roma people have been present and integral part of the societies in Europe for over 600 years. Throughout this time Roma have made an immense contribution to national cultures while having managed to develop strategies to preserve the resilient Roma cultural heritage as a strategy of survival amidst a history of continuous persecution, discrimination and violence”, she said.

“Many major institutions need to put more effort into educating people about Roma creativity not being merely ethnic, intangible, spiritual or naive, but forming an integral and constructive part of what we call Europe today. ERIAC also needs to continue to use these opportunities to the fullest, to assist the process for diversity and inclusion, and reflection in majority cultural institutions, in employment, in programming, in cultural participation. Most importantly, this can create further possibilities for income generation and recognition for Roma cultural producers”, said Junghaus.

Related Articles

Ambassador Thomas Schieb: Sanctions On Russia Will Help Serbia Progress

German Ambassador to Serbia Thomas Schieb said that democracy, freedom of thought and expression, independent institutions and human rights are extremely fragile concepts, which...

National Day Of Portugal Marked

On the 14th of June, the Portuguese Embassy in Belgrade celebrated the Day of Portugal, Camões and the Portuguese Communities, with the presence of...

Meeting Of Members Of The Embassies Of Germany And France

While the new German Minister of Foreign Affairs Annalena Baerbock introduced herself to her colleague Jean-Yves Le Drian, the teams of the German and...

German Boysen Officially Starts Production In Subotica

German exhaust systems manufacturer Boysen opens a factory in the City of Subotica. Around €65 million investment and 500 jobs by 2024.  BAS Boysen Abgassysteme...

H.E. Thomas Schieb, Ambassador Of Germany

Continuity Is A German Trademark

There is no doubt that the Western Balkans and EU enlargement will remain high on Germany’s agenda. Whoever becomes the next Chancellor will certainly...

European Qualifications Passport for Refugees to Bring New Opportunities To The Refugee Population In Serbia

The European Qualifications Passport for Refugees is a specially developed assessment scheme for refugees, even for those who cannot fully document their qualifications, providing...

German Chancellor Angela Merkel Arrives In Serbia

President Aleksandar Vucic welcomed at the "Nikola Tesla" Airport German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who will pay a two-day official visit to Serbia. The delegation that...

Farewell Reception For Ambassador Sem Fabrizi

Ambassador of Italy to Serbia, H.E. Carlo lo Cascio was the host of the reception in honour of the Head of the European Union...