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* France: Mayoral candidate for 6th arrondissement of Paris would "concentrate" Gypsies in "camps
By Jana Kavalírová, Tony Todd, www.france24.com, translated by Gwendolyn Albert

10/03/2014, Paris, France - Paul-Marie Coûteaux, a candidate for the fringe CIEL party (which stands for "Sovereignty, Independence and Freedom") linked to the anti-EU and anti-immigrant National Front (FN) party, has compared the presence of Romani people in Paris to an "invasion of lepers" undermining the city's "aesthetic order". In a blog posting dated 19 February, Coûteaux wrote: "What can the interior minister do other than concentrate these foreign populations into camps where they would no doubt feel that life there is so far removed from their traveling lifestyle that they would rather leave such an inhospitable country."
A French rights group called SOS Racism stated last Monday that it was planning to initiate court proceedings against Coûteaux for his "flagrant" and "anti-republican" statements. In a subsequent interview for the French news server Metronews.fr, Côuteaux said his words had been misunderstood.
"If people have misinterpreted my use of the word 'camps', then I am sorry," the candidate said."I am a Catholic and a Gaullist... how could I be calling for the creation of concentration camps in the year 2014?"

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* Report - Afro-American Movement a Guide for Respecting Human Rights of Roma People
By Roma Network

01/03/2014 - On 27th February 2014 The Institute of Romani Culture in Albania with support of US Embassy in Tirana commemorated the Black History Month by organizing the "Afro-American Movement a Guide for Respecting Human Rights of Roma People" event. The event consisted in a combination of presentations, role plays, screening of documentary and performing of a fumet, accompanied with Roma music played in Jazz style, followed by open discussion in commemoration of the successful Afro-American movement for equal civil rights.
The event was attended by Roma and non-Roma youth, representatives of civil society organizations, US Embassy in Tirana, Municipality of Durres as well as other local institutions and media. Representative of US Embassy in Tirana, Ms. Angjelina Pistoli thanked the Roma youth for their heartfelt appreciation for the Afro-American movement and encouraged them to become role models in their own communities.

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* European Court pressuring Czech Govt to compensate Romani women sterilized without their consent
By čon, Novinky.cz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert

13/03/2014, Prague - The Czech daily Právo reports that five years ago, the Fischer cabinet expressed regret on behalf of the Czech Government for what has happened to women who have been sterilized without their consent, but the women do not consider that sort of moral satisfaction sufficient and are asking for financial compensation as well. Those who have not succeeded in the Czech courts have turned to the European Court for Human Rights.

"It can be anticipated that compensation will be awarded as a result of the court procedure against the Czech Republic," admitted Czech Human Rights Minister Jiří Dienstbier (Czech Social Democratic Party - ČSSD) yesterday. The minister told the Czech daily Právo that the Government has decided to forestall the expected judgment by drafting a law on compensation.  

"When someone suffers a wrong, it must be evaluated and satisfaction must be provided," the minister said. It is not yet clear what the law will look like. "First we will draft the explanatory report for the law, where we flesh out our ideas. For the time being I don't want to discuss the basic parameters, I haven't clarified them," Dienstbier said when pressed for details. 

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* Roma in Ukraine call for calm: UN day march pledges support
By Grattan Puxon

08/03/2014, London/Kiev - When Roma migrants head a march up Whitehall shortly to mark UN Anti-Racism Day they will carry a banner calling for a peaceful resolution of the crisis in Ukraine. It was decided yesterday at a planning meeting for the 22 March event held at TUC Congress House to respond in this way to an urgent appeal received from the Roma Council of Ukraine.
"Everyone at the meeting agreed," said 8 April Movement representative Veerendra Rishi, director of the Indian Institute of Romani Studies. "I will be with Sikh community members at the rally."
The appeal, backed also by the Ukrainian Romani women's organization Chirikli, expresses the need for all parties to find a civilized and balanced approach that can prevent armed confrontation by peaceful means.
"We are grateful for your support", writes Zola Kondur, chairperson of Chirikli . "Your co-operation at this time means a lot to us."

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* Hungary court orders school closure over Roma segregation
By Nick Thorpe, BBC News

Nyiregyhaza, Hungary - The Greek Catholic Church in Hungary has lost a landmark court case to keep open a primary school in a predominantly Roma neighbourhood.

Human rights activists successfully argued that the school segregated Roma children from the non-Roma majority. The school in the eastern city of Nyiregyhaza was closed down under desegregation plans in 2007 - but reopened in 2011.

The ruling could affect other Church- and state-run schools in Hungary.

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* European elections 2014: the way towards more equality in Europe - 7 demands from the European Network Against Racism

Despite the ongoing economic, financial and now social crisis that has been hitting the European Union since 2008, it has remained the most prosperous area of the global economy, weighing 25% of the total wealth generated in the world today. Yet 1 out of 4 EU citizens lives in or is at risk of poverty. The next 50% are not particularly well-off, just surviving above the waterline.

The next European Parliament to be elected in May 2014 has a crucial role to play when it comes to reducing the entrenched inequalities faced by its citizens and residents. Among these are ethnic minorities and migrants who often face discrimination on multiple grounds: ethnic origin, nationality, religion, social status, income, gender or age.

The European Network Against Racism (ENAR) therefore puts forward 7 key demands for more equality in Europe to upcoming Members of the European Parliament. Leading Members of the European Parliament have already endorsed our demands because they are convinced that they will lead to a better and more equal Europe and are also sound, concrete and achievable.

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* Internship opportunity for young Roma at the Roma Education Fund (REF)

Internship positions are an important component of REF activities as it allows young educated Roma to get acquainted with the organization and issues related to education of the Roma people in Central, Eastern, and South-Eastern Europe. It also helps the REF to establish a network of young and dynamic people that following their internship program at REF will support in various ways the objectives and mission of the Fund and Roma inclusion in conventional educational systems.

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* National Democratic Institute Seeks Resident Program Manager in Hungary

The National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI or the Institute) seeks a full-time Resident Program Manager to develop and implement a regional program aimed at promoting civic and political engagement of Roma citizens through targeted in-country assistance and cross-border learning and exchanges among participants from Hungary, Romania and Slovakia. The initiative would focus on equipping Roma activists with the capacities to conducted targeted issue-based advocacy in the areas such as education, employment, housing or healthcare, leading to better policies governing discrimination and violence against Roma citizens. The position is based in Budapest, Hungary, and requires regular travel within Hungary and in the region.

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