Romani settlement flooded near Tuzla, Bosnia

07 November 2001

Recent heavy rainfall caused serious damage to the Romani settlement in the village of Kiseljak, the Romani non-governmental organisation Sae Roma from nearby Tuzla, northeastern Bosnia and Herzegovina, reported in their September 2001 newsletter. According to Sae Roma, the entire settlement had to be evacuated on September 26, 2001, because of a flood, and the local fire department had to be called in to rescue a six-member family who were stuck in their home. The fourteen Romani families whose houses were the most severely damaged in the floods had to find alternative accommodation with family and friends; the food supply to the settlement also had to be temporarily suspended as the roads were flooded. Previously, the organisation had been in negotiation with the local authorities in order to solve the problem of the danger of flooding from a local natural pool. They proposed building a proper canal for the pool, but the authorities were of the opinion that building a sewer system in the settlement would be enough. However, in the September floods, the sewer system proved insufficient to handle large quantities of water, which resulted in the flooding of the settlement. Sae Roma warns that unless action is taken, floods might reoccur in the future.

(Sae Roma)

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