Kaliningrad Governor Urged to Stop Inhuman Treatment of Romani Families

03 April 2006

On 24 February 2006, the European Roma Rights Centre sent a letter to the Governor of Kalinigrad region, Mr Georgiy Boos, urging him to intervene and stop the demolition of Romani houses Dorozhny village of Kaliningrad. The ERRC expressed concern that the actions of the Kaliningrad authorities had exposed Romani families to homelessness in violation of international human rights law. The letter responded to reports from the International Roma Union of Baltic States and the CIS, in February 2006, that city authorities of Kaliningrad sent bulldozers to demolish houses of Romani families. The forced evictions undertaken by the authorities exposed 4 Romani families, including children and women, to homelessness aggravated by severe weather conditions in the Kaliningrad region at this time of the year.

The ERRC noted in the letter that the actions of the city administration are in breach of a number of international as well as domestic human rights provisions, in particular the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, to which the Russian Federation is a party, and the Constitution of the Russian Federation.

In the letter's conclusion, the ERRC urged the Governor to immediately cease the demolition of the Romani houses in the Dorozhny village and start consultations with the Romani families to find an appropriate solution to their housing situation. Further, the ERRC promised to continue monitoring the actions of the Russian authorities with respect to the housing rights crisis affecting the Romani families in the Dorozhny vil lage and reporting to domestic and international human rights bodies as well as media. The full text of the letter is available at: http://www.errc.org/cikk.php?cikk=2520.



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