Today is International Day of the Roma, and Tony Gatlif, a French film director of Roma origins who has just released his film “Liberty” about the persecution of the Roma during the second World War has been talking to Euronews about his experience as a member of this ethnic minority community.
He said: “[You know, they say] we can’t put up with these people, we have to arest these people. They are a problem. No! They are human beings. People talk like that, you know. The problem is that the Roma have never been citizens in their countries. They aren’t citizens in France, they have never been citizens, although they’ve been in France since the Middle Ages. They aren’t citizens in any European countries, not in Hungary or Romania.”
At the Second European Summit in Cordoba in southern Spain, the French EU Minister, Pierre Lellouche, criticised a lack of political will to resolve the problems which this ethnic minority face within the EU.
The Spanish Minister Trinidad Jiminez concurred, saying that their situation was “unacceptable”.
In a symbolic gesture, flowers were thrown into the river, reflecting the constant movement of the Roma people throughout Europe.