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International Roma Day: Pejcinovic Buric (Council of Europe), “remembering the past to build the future”

“A community that is well aware of its history and culture can better look at the present and future with confidence”. Marija Pejčinović Burić, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, said this ahead of International Roma Day (8 April). “From my experience so far as Secretary General, I can say that I am impressed by the determination of Roma youth to establish organisations and national and international networks, to create connections in our Member States and encourage us – this is praiseworthy – and to acknowledge and remember the Roma Holocaust victims and Roma resistance”. “In the thirties and forties – she pointed out -, Roma and nomadic people were condemned to extermination. From the Baltic to the Balkans, the fascist forces executed hundreds of thousands of them. In Germany, only a few thousands Sinti and Roma survived the Holocaust and concentration camps. Yet the question of the Roma massacre was not even raised at the Nuremberg trials”. The online conference organized by the Council of Europe from 7 to 9 April on “Roma Youth: Together for Emancipation and Empowerment: the role of history in the participation and inclusion of Roma young people” intends to be a contribution to the European collective memory.

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