United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child Reviews Germany
28 May 2004
On January 30, 2004, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child issued its Concluding Observations on Germany, concerning Germany's compliance with its obligations under the International Convention on the Rights of the Child. The Committee expressed concern that Romani children may be forcefully expelled to countries from which their families have fled, and recommended that German authorities "take all necessary measures to review its legislation and policies regarding Roma children and other children belonging to ethnic minorities seeking asylum in the State party."
Speaking on the occasion of the release of the Committee's findings, Mr Boris Tsilevich, a member of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe involved in the investigation of the forcible expulsion of Roma from Germany to Serbia and Montenegro, stated, "The Committee's conclusions are very important. Our work has caused us deep concern about Germany's respect for children's rights where Romani children are at issue."
In recent years, the German government has carried out high numbers of forcible expulsions of Roma to countries in Central and Southeastern Europe, notably Serbia and Montenegro and Romania. German authorities have expelled Romani children who have been born in Germany, have attended German schools for significant periods of time, and who have formed real and lasting ties to Germany. In the extreme case, German officials have expelled Roma and others regarded as "Gypsies" to Kosovo, despite serious concerns that such persons are under threat of persecution in the province. The full text of the Committee's Concluding Observations on Germany are available on the Internet at: http://www.ohchr.org/tbru/crc/Germany.pdf. (ERRC)