Some 60 Roma children from socially excluded localities in the Czech
Republic and Slovakia, along with members of the Czech Philharmonic, are
taking part in the ‘Romano Drom’ music and dance workshop in North
Bohemia. The aim of the summer school, organised annually by musician and
choir mistress Ida Kelarová, is to support children and youth at risk of
social exclusion. The two-week school will culminate with a series of
performances, starting on Tuesday night in Nový Bor.
Czech Roma who survived the holocaust during WWII will be entitled to a
payment of 2500 euros according to the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs. A
spokeswoman for the ministry said that the payment would affect between 10
and 15 people. The payment follows long negotiations between the foreign
ministries of the Czech Republic and Germany and has been welcomed by the
Czech committee for the compensation of Roma holocaust victims.
Germany is to pay compensation to remaining elderly victims of the Roma
Holocaust who suffered during WWII in concentration camps such as Lety or
the death camp Auschwitz. Each will receive a one-off payment of around
2,560 euros in the coming months. The agreement was reached with the help
of the Czech Foreign Ministry and former special envoy on Holocaust issues,
Jiří Šitler (now the Czech ambassador to Stockholm).
Up to 115,000 poor people are living in 600 ghettos around the Czech
Republic, according to human rights minister Jiří Dienstbier. The
cabinet has just backed his plans to help such people – many from the
Roma minority – by redirecting part of their housing benefits away from
often unscrupulous landlords and toward improving their homes and paying
An annual report to be discussed by the government on Thursday states says
more than half of country’s Roma minority lives n social exclusion, the
Czech News Agency reports. Experts estimate that as more than 113, 000
people. The Roma make up two percent of the country’s population.
Prague’s High Court has sentenced defendants Tomáš Kopecký and Michal
Poláček to six years and nine months in prison for a racially-motivated
attack against Romanies in 2012. The duo targetted a boarding house in Aš
in the west of the country, throwing Molotov cocktails into two apartments.
The attack was qualified as attempted murder. There were 18 people in the
building at the time – eight of them children.
The 18th Khamoro World Roma Festival, showcasing Roma musicians from all
over the world, opened with an open-air oncert at the embankment in Prague
centre at the weekend. The event runs through June 4. Apart from concerts,
the festival programme offers a number of accompanying events, including
expert seminars on current topics.
Minister for human rights and equal opportunities, Jiří Dienstbier, and
Justice Minister Robert Pelikán on Friday attended a commemorative
ceremony for the victims of the Romany Holocaust at the site of a former
concentration camp in Lety in South Bohemia. More than 1,300 Romanies were
held prisoners in the camp between 1942 and 1943. Over 300 of them died
there while others were transported to Nazi extermination camps.News archive