Just one week after the Fidesz government launched its latest brazen assault on Hungarian NGOs specifically targeting the Helsinki Committee, the Committee scored a victory against the state in Strasbourg. In a judgment in the case of Király and Dömötör v. Hungary issued on 17 January, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) found that the Hungarian State violated Article 8 of the Convention in the wake of violent incidents in the village of Devecser, during an anti-Roma demonstration attended by nine far-right groups and members of Jobbik. The applicants were awarded EUR 10,700 each in damages, and the ECtHR sent a clear message to the Hungarian Government about its positive obligations and abject failures to protect Roma communities from intimidation by far-right extremists.
Two of Myzejen Alushi’s five children are growing up in state care institutions in Tirana, over 100 kilometres from their family home in Fier in south-western Albania. Myzejen is half Egyptian and her husband Lulush is Roma; their children were taken away and placed in separate institutions without any court decision; and the Alushis are still the legal guardians of eleven-year-old M.D. and five-year-old Sh.A. This is the story of their struggle to get their children back home.
In Bulgaria, racist hate crimes have become more and more the norm for Roma, refugees and other local minorities. Yet, this increased prevalence has only further relegated the issue of acknowledging and tackling racially motivated crime on judicial, public and civic agendas. In courtrooms, government offices, police stations and cafés across the country, “the invisible crime” has been the elephant in the room, which until very recently had been ushered discreetly into a cupboard, out of sight but not out of mind.
“I want to say here, as unambiguously and as clearly as I can, that discrimination and prejudice against Travellers and Roma is racism and it must be named as racism and tackled as racism.”
Michael D. Higgins, President of Ireland
Seven months after the Carrickmines tragedy which claimed 10 young lives on a poorly maintained temporary halting site, the Irish Government stands accused in Europe of continued neglect and failure when it comes to accommodation for Travellers.
Roma in Serbia still denied birth certificates – ENS members take legal action to challenge register offices’ unlimited power
The purist in me imagines bureaucrats running around maternity wards, struggling to catch all the details (“Name? Mother’s name? Sorry, can you repeat that…”) over the sound of new-borns screaming for the first time.