The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD), in its concluding observations just issued, called on the Italian authorities to halt all further evictions of Roma, and to scotch any plans to establish new segregated camps. This stands as a forthright vindication of the concerns highlighted by the ERRC in its recent submission to the Committee.
Today the European Network on Statelessness (ENS) submits its petition with tens of thousands of signatures calling on European states to prevent children from growing up without a nationality; to close the gaps to identify and grant nationality to children born on their territory who would otherwise be stateless, as soon as possible after birth; and to ensure access to free and universal birth registration. This issue remains particularly pertinent to Roma.
In a Milan neighbourhood on the night of Friday 4th of November, Paolo Cagna Ninchi was physically attacked and verbally abused by an unknown assailant on his way home. The motive behind the attack was “because his wife is the Gypsy that goes on TV” (è la zingara che va in televisione). Paolo will need an operation for the injury to his eardrum, but otherwise is physically recovering from the assault.
In the latest criticism of Italy’s shameful treatment of Roma, a Strasbourg body expressed concern at the noticeable increase of xenophobia and anti-Gypsyism, and the widespread and commonplace use of discriminatory, intolerant, and racist language in political discourse and media outlets in Italy.
Will the outcome of the 5th of June local elections make a whit of a difference to the exclusion and privation suffered by Roma in Italy? The authors fear not, and vague campaign promises notwithstanding, anticipate more of the same with no respite from forced evictions and segregationist solutions.