Chronicle

Campaining for Roma rights

March 1: Sent a letter to Chief Prosecutor of Greece Mr Panayotis Dimopulos expressing concern over the destruction of barracks inhabited by Roma in the town of Aspropyrgos in the Attica region of Greece.

March 8-9: Submitted written comments concerning Italy, for consideration by the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination at its 54th session in Geneva.

March 29: Sent a letter to the General Prosecutor of Macedonia expressing concern over instances of police abuse in the central Macedonian town of Štip.

Conferences and meetings

ERRC staff members and affiliated consultants:

December 21, 1998: Spoke on human rights monitoring and the situation of Roma in Europe to young Romani activists from the Voivodina region and students of the Gender Studies course at the University of Novi Sad, Yugoslavia.

January 8, 1999: Participated in press conference of the Legal Defence Bureau for Ethnic Minorities to present their White Book for the year, in Košice, Slovakia.

January 15-16: Attended a conference held by the Hungarian Soros Foundation on Romani education in Pécs, Hungary.

January 22: Attended a press conference held by out-going editorial staff of TV Patrin, the Romani program of the Hungarian state television, Budapest, Hungary.

January 23: Attended as independent monitor the National Gypsy Minority Self-Government elections, Budapest, Hungary

January 25-26: Participated in a conference on "Identifying objectives to 2010 for the Human Rights Movement in the OSCE area" in Bellagio, Italy, organised by the International Helsinki Federation of Human Rights.

February 4-7: Participated in the "Third International Conference of Directors and Chief Editors of Roma Media", in Ohrid, Macedonia, organised by the Open Society Institute Macedonia and the BTR national television station.

February 8: Participated as guest speaker on the subject of discrimination in schools at a training for Romani assistants in the Brno school system, Strĕdisko Drom, Brno, Czech Republic.

February 8: Held a press conference in Skopje, Macedonia on the occasion of the publication of the ERRC country report A Pleasant Fiction: The Human Rights Situation of Roma in Macedonia in Macedonian.

February 14: Held a meeting of Romani parents to discuss the problem of over-representation of Romani children in schools for the mentally handicapped, Ostrava, Czech Republic.

February 15: Attended a conference organised by the Foundation for Equal Opportunities in Budapest Hungary, concerning the need for and possibilities for introducing "actio popularis" (popular action) into the Hungarian legal system.

February 18-19: Held a workshop on "Human Rights Litigation - Law and Practice in International and Domestic Courts" in co-operation with the Ukrainian Romani organisation Romani Yag, Uzhorod, Ukraine.

February 19: Attended a conference organised by the Human Rights Information and Documentation Center, The Office of the Ombudsman on Data Protection and the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung entitled "Data Protection Every Day", Budapest, Hungary.

March 4: Observed a hearing in the trial of Dinko Šakić, for war crimes during World War II, Zagreb, Croatia.

March 4-7: Participated in a workshop on Roma and the police, "Legal and Human Rights Framework", organised by the European Dialogue with the help of the Roma Participation Project of the Open Society Institute, the Project on Ethnic Relations, and the European Roma Rights Center, in Turvey, England.

March 15-16: Spoke on the protection of Roma rights at the conference "Islam and Human Rights in Post-Communist Europe", in Sofia, Bulgaria, organised by the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee and the Center for the Study of Human Rights at Columbia University, New York, USA.

March 16: Held a workshop on litigating cases of race discrimination in education, Budapest, Hungary.

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