With their call to President Zelenskiy, Roma organizations are responding to the recent death of a Roma youth in Brno and the conflict between Roma and three Ukrainians in Burdubice, in which a Roma youth was stabbed.
“Thorough, effective and impartial investigations into these incidents and full transparency in the reporting of its findings will ensure justice for the victims and send a clear signal to society that such crimes are unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” the bodies said. A joint statement. However, according to available information, it was the Roma who instigated the conflict in Brno.
A thirty-seven-year-old Ukrainian stabbed two Roma in a fight at a tram stop in Brno, and one of them – twenty-three-year-old Nicholas T – died in hospital. Police are now trying to clarify what happened before the Roma teenager’s death.
As several witnesses reported to the police, the young Roma traveled on the tram playing loud music and shouting. The Ukrainian yelled at them several times and they fought after getting off the tram. However, the Roma were outnumbered, so the foreigner pulled out a knife.
The Roma, who had planned to call a demonstration after the attack, canceled it due to the discovery. Now, however, organizations are calling on the Ukrainian president to address the situation.
“Our organizations call on President Zelensky to call on Ukrainian refugees who have applied for asylum in the Czech Republic and other European countries, regardless of ethnicity, to accept a life of social harmony and tolerance. We stress the importance of accepting them generously, respecting diversity, and refraining from criminal or violent activities.” The ERGO Network and the ICO Roma Women’s Fund said in a joint statement sent to the “Sirigli” news site. Romea.cz.
Discrimination against Roma refugees from Ukraine
The organizations also pointed out discrimination against Roma refugees from Ukraine in their report. “These refugees are often seen as Roma migrants rather than refugees and are therefore denied the same help and support,” the organizations said, fearing the situation could escalate.
However, according to the results of a new poll by the Center for Public Opinion Research, nearly two-thirds of the Czech public live with Roma, regardless of their origin.
However, in the last five years, the negative assessment of coexistence with Roma has eased. “The stereotypical view of the Roma people is generally weakened. This view is not conditioned by the socio-demographic data of the interviewees, but is related to the negative assessment of Roma coexistence with the majority,” says Milan Dusek of the CVVM.