On the International Day of Remembrance for the Victims of the Nazi Roma Genocide, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Marija Pejčinović-Buric, called for combating discrimination and protecting respect for the Roma and their dignity.
This is stated in Pejčinović Burić’s statementposted on the website of the Council of Europe, Ukrinform reports.
“Today, Roma communities still face antigypsy sentiment in many parts of our continent. This is a special form of racism, an ideology based on racial superiority, and the manifestations of which are varied and insidious,” said the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
She recalled that August 2 is the International Day of Remembrance for the Victims of the Gypsy Holocaust. “78 years ago, on the night of August 3, 1944, 3,000 Roma were killed in the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, mostly women and children. This massacre is an important episode in the history of the Roma Holocaust. In this story, hatred, exploitation and stigma lead to extermination. It is important to remember these terrible events in order to honor the memory of the victims and prevent the recurrence of such crimes,” said Pejčinović-Buric.
She stressed that the Council of Europe is fighting against discrimination, racism and antigypsyism. Thus, in May the member states of the Council of Europe adopted a Recommendation on Combating Hate Speech. The document provides guidance to national authorities and key stakeholders on how to introduce a wide range of legal and non-legal measures to combat this outdated phenomenon, which is always taking on new forms.
Also, according to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, a program is being prepared to integrate the history of the Roma into school curricula and teaching materials, which will be based on facts and consider the history of the Roma and the tragedies they have gone through.
“We also defend the respect and dignity of the Roma, who have the right to it, like everyone else, now and always,” said the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
As Ukrinform reported with reference to Roza Tapanova, head of the Babi Yar National Historical and Memorial Reserve, the Museum of Memory of the Victims of the Babi Yar tragedy will have an exposition dedicated to the Roma who died at the hands of the Nazis during World War II.