Remembering Roma genocide victims is crucial to overcoming today’s discrimination

“Tomorrow we pay tribute to the victims of the Roma genocide perpetrated during the Second World War,” said the Parliamentary Assembly’s General Rapporteur on combating racism and intolerance, Milena Santerini (Italy, SOC), speaking on the eve of International Roma Holocaust Remembrance Day (2 August 2016).

“For centuries, Roma and Travellers have faced discrimination and persecution throughout Europe. There is still too little awareness of the genocide committed against them in the middle of last century. This lack of knowledge feeds prejudice, hate crime and discrimination,” she said.

“International Roma Holocaust Remembrance Day reminds us that there is still much to be done. Council of Europe member States should strengthen their efforts to ensure that sites of persecution and extermination of Roma are recognised and remembered, and that public awareness of these horrific crimes is increased,” Santerini said. “This is crucial to promoting tolerance and mutual understanding and to combating discrimination today.”