ERRC Urges Russian Newspaper to Refrain from Using Inflammatory Anti-Romani Language

15 February 2007

Anti-Romani hate speech contributes to the growth of intolerance toward Roma

On 15 February 2007, the ERRC sent a letter of concern to Mr Boris Sorkin, Managing Director of the Russian Information Agency "REGNUM", expressing concern at the regular linkage of Roma with crime in the agency's reports and noting that such media reports contribute to a climate of intolerance of Roma. The letter referred to numerous articles published in the newspaper collected by the ERRC during 2006 and 2007, which explicitly link Roma with drug dealing and criminality. In its letter, which was copied to the Director of the Central Regional Administration of Rosohrancultura, the ERRC urged the information agency to take a firm stand against hate speech and to refrain from publishing inflammatory anti-Romani language. The full text of the letter is available:

The letter is a result of ongoing ERRC work in the Russian Federation to combat hate speech against Roma. Since 2006, the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs has supported ERRC work in the Russian Federation.

Persons wishing to express similar concerns are urged to contact:

Mr Boris Sorkin
Managing Director, Information Agency "REGNUM"
Pravdi 21 stroenie 1, Moscow 125040, Russia
Fax: +7 495 2594639

Mr Alexander Haev
Director, Central Regional Administration of Rosohrancultura
Malaya Nikitskaya str. 12, Moscow 630091, Russia
Fax: + 7 495 2904573

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