6.       One of the most salient examples of these restrictive policies was the case of 74 Roma rejected asylum seekers deported from Belgium to Slovakia in October 1999, despite the explicit request of the European Court of Human Rights to delay deportation made in response to a complaint filed on behalf of the Roma applicants by the Belgian League for Human Rights. On February 5, 2002 the European Court of Human Rights found that in this case Belgium violated a number of provisions of the European Convention of Human Rights, including Article 5 1 (right to liberty and security), Article 5 4 (right to take proceedings by which lawfulness of detention shall be decided), and Article 13 taken together with Article 4 of Protocol No. 4 (prohibition of the collective expulsion of aliens) 4.


1 Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovak Republic.

2 For example, in 1999, Finland and Norway imposed a visa regime on Slovak citizens in reaction to arrival of several hundreds of Roma fleeing Slovakia.

3 This question, and, more generally, patterns of discrimination of Roma applicants throughout asylum procedure was examined more closely in a report prepared by the Committee on “Restrictions on asylum in the member states of the Council of Europe and the European Union”, Rapporteur: Mr Cilevičs, see Doc 8598

4 Press release issued by the Registrar of the European Court of Human Rights: Judgement in the case of Conka v. Belgium, http://www.echr.coe.int/Eng/PRESS/2002/feb/Conkajudepress.htm

5 The full text is quoted in Roma Rights, No 4, 2001, http://errc.org/rr_nr4_2001/wcar2.shtml

6 Roma Rights, No 4, 2001, http://errc.org/rr_nr4_2001/snap1.shtml

7 This question is closely examined in a report prepared by the Committee on Migration, Refugees and Demography on the Humanitarian situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Rapporteur: Mr Cilevičs, Latvia, SOC).