This video from France is called Protests against Sarkozy’s expulsion of Roma.
This video is called Statement by Viviane REDING, EC Vice-President in charge of Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship on the situation of the Roma.
By Peter Schwarz in Germany:
18 September 2010
The attempt of European Union commissioner Viviane Reding to make the French government accountable for its mass deportation of Roma came to a grinding halt after a few hours.
After the head of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso and a number of European heads of government had criticised her choice of words, Reding apologised for drawing parallels with the deportations carried out by the Nazis. French President Nicolas Sarkozy indignantly rejected the charges made by Reding and insisted that his government would not budge in its deportation policy. Sarkozy’s stance immediately won the support of the Italian head of government, Silvio Berlusconi.
At the EU summit on Thursday, Sarkozy then lashed out at Barroso in what most observers regarded as a further undermining of the status of the Commission by the most powerful member states. Now the 27 European heads of state and government have agreed to address “a long-term strategy for the solution of the problem” at their next meeting.
This gives rise to the fear that the dispute over the Roma is merely the starting point for the removal of one of the few freedoms granted by the European Union to workers up to now—free movement, the right to live and work in any EU member country. Even prior to the outbreak of the current conflict, EU Commission President Barroso had told the Spanish newspaper El Pais on 9 September, “It is a mistake to say that freedom of movement is absolute”.
It would appear that nationalism—and the xenophobia and racism bound up with it—is advancing irresistibly across Europe, irrespective of the reservations made by individual representatives of the ruling elite such as Reding. In the process, human rights and citizen’s rights are being swept aside. Why?
Sarkozy’s attacks against the Roma are not popular. His poll ratings are at an all time low, as are those of his Italian colleague Berlusconi. Sarkozy’s campaign against a tiny minority of Roma—of the 65 million inhabitants of France just 15,000 are Roma with foreign passports—together with his discrimination against Muslims, represent a despicable attempt to divert increasing social tensions into racist channels.
So far, Sarkozy has been unsuccessful. Tens of thousands have taken to the streets to protest against the Roma deportations. And just a few days ago, three million protested against his pension reform.
Nevertheless, the efforts to stir up racist and anti-Muslim sentiments are multiplying—and not only in France. In Holland, Denmark, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, Hungary and other countries, racist parties, thanks to support from well-heeled financial backers, are able to exert considerable influence. In Germany, the recent publication of a book by Thilo Sarrazin, promoted by much of the media, was used to whip up racist prejudices against Muslims.
Ultimately, this wave of nationalism and racial filth cannot be reduced to the personal inclination of this or that reactionary politician. The trend is far too widespread. It is the result of the decline and rottenness of capitalist society, from which the vices of the past are growing like maggots.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy said on Thursday that Chancellor Merkel told him Germany was preparing to clear Roma camps in the coming weeks. The denial from Berlin was unmistakable. The remarks come after a tense European Union summit in Brussels that saw many leaders fall out with Sarkozy over France’s treatment of the Roma minority: here.
Report: Sarkozy threatened to boycott EU summit over Roma comment: here.
Roma in Europe: map here.
During the Third Reich, Germany had a small black community, yet relatively little is known about their life in the Nazi era. Deutsche Welle takes a look at survival strategies under Hitler’s oppressive regime: here.
John and Mary Flynn are Travellers facing eviction from their home at Dale Farm in Essex—a scrap yard before Gypsies bought the land and made their homes there: here.
French workers were to hold a further general strike this week over pensions—eight days after the previous one: here.
Protests broke out in Sweden after a fascist party won 20 seats in last week’s election. Within hours of the result some 6,000 took to the streets of Stockholm, chanting “No to racism”, in a protest called by 17 year old Felicia Margineanu on Facebook. Up to 1,000 also protested in Gothenburg: here.
The Right Wing and the Roma: EU Presidency a Test for Tolerance in Hungary: here.
- Brussels seeks ‘federalising’ EU powers over justice and human rights (telegraph.co.uk)
- ‘Roma overdose’ magazine cover sparks outrage in France (telegraph.co.uk)
- ‘A wake-up call’ for Hungary: Neo-Nazis jailed for attacks that killed six Roma – including a boy aged four (independent.co.uk)
- New EU member Croatia defies Brussels on arrest warrant law (irishtimes.com)
- Commemoration of the Roma Holocaust – Porajmos (riadefacto.wordpress.com)
- Demonstrations Against Neo-Nazi Marches in Czech Republic (romanipe.wordpress.com)
- Justice row sours EU-Croatia ties (bbc.co.uk)