RWe refuse legalists which know the law but do not know how to interpret nor apply it

We have already heard the new and read it in the newspaper that the Catalonian High Court of Justice has denied The widow's pension to a Gypsy woman, because according to the Magistrates which make it up, the Gypsy wedding has not legal validity. With regards to this formal aggression to the culture, history, customs and traditions of 600.000 Spanish Gypsies  - and twelve millions and a half that are living in Europe and get married exactly in the same way as we the Spanish Gypsies do - the Romani Union announces the intention to appeal against the sentence until all Spanish jurisdictional petitions deplete, without refusing the possibility of it being the same International Court, who passes judgement about this sentence,  which we consider to be completely absurd and unjustified.

In this urgent valuation we want to remind that the president of the Romani Union, Juan de Dios Ramírez-Heredia, while being Deputy in the Spanish Court, presented at The House of Commons a parliamentarian initiative directed to achieve the formal recognition, on the part of public authorities, of the Gypsy Wedding. That initiative was accepted by the House of Commons.

Equally, The Romani Union expresses that even just with the same text of  that parliamentarian initiative, the Spanish Military Court absolved from joining the military service, young Gipsies who were in charge of children and proved to be married through the Gypsy ritual.

The Romani Union deeply regrets the Catalonian High Court of Justice resolution which is far away from the social reality and nowadays life. Once again, unfortunately, these magistrates have behaved as those legists who know the law but are not capable to interpret and apply it. They remain firm to the norm and apply it falling to recognise the true sense of its meaning. They are not concerned about the real aim of it because they only follow the procedural law. They prefer the legal security rather than any other moral and  certitude or material justice.

We, the spanish Gipsies think that being equal in front of the law, as it  states the 14th article of our Constitution, means that in the practice of justice should be considered normal, what is normal in real life and daily good fellowship of thousands of people who are at the same time Gipsies and full right spanish citizens.



The war in Kosovo in not over Prejudice Rules Against Asylum Seekers

The war in Kosovo in not over



published in
he Independent
of United 

This text is 
a summary 


The war in Kosovo is not over. Since June 18th the KLA and their Albanian supporters have been terrorizing the Kosovar Roma/Hashkalija in an ethnic cleansing operation that has destroyed more than 20,000 Roma/Hashkalija homes.
     In many villages and towns, all Roma homes have been destroyed. Families whose Roma ancestors arrived here as early as 1320, or Hashkalija whose oral traditions recount an even older history, have not only been made homeless, but over 150,000 have had to flee to other countries.

    In order to justify these attacks, the KLA and their supports have labeled all Roma and Hashkalija as having collaborated with the Serbs. Yet the evidence on the ground does not support this allegation. Although KFOR and the UN police have received many requests to detain Serbs suspected of atrocities during the war, no Roma or Hashkalija have been mentioned in reports.
    The ethnic Albanians dislike of Roma/Hashkalija goes back many years before the war. When the Albanians first started to demonstrate back in 1969 against Serb rule in Kosovo, the Roma/Hashkalija refused to join this demonstration. While the Albanians wanted independence, the Roma/Hashkalija were still too far down the economic scale to think of that luxury. All they wanted were jobs and education. When they finally achieved those two
things under Tito, they were so grateful they thought they were being patriotic Yugoslavians by not taking  the street. The Albanians have resented the Roma/Hashkalija ever since. 
    Although over 70% of Roma/Hashkalija had high educational degrees and mostof them held good jobs during the years preceding the war, the Albanians today try to drag up the old stereotypes: lazy, dirty, worthless, homeless. 
     Today about 40,000 Roma/Hashkalija are homeless, but only because their home has been burned since the arrival of KFOR. The typical operation for cleansing a neighborhood of Roma has been for a couple of local KLA soldiers to accompany several Albanians to a Roma home and then threaten the occupants with death if they were still living there the next day.
Usually the Roma occupants didn't wait, but left immediately, many wearing only their pajamas. Their homes were then burned. If the home was in a good area, the rubble was soon bulldozed away and a new home built on the site for a local high-ranking Albanian official.
    Ironically, Roma who refused to give in to these threats and who did not leave their homes usually were not attacked, and their home was not burned----until now.
    Now, today, with the disbanding of the KLA, a new wave of attacks is taking place and Roma homes not destroyed in the first wave are being burned.
    The attacks are against all Roma and Hashkalija. No one is spared. Not the retired, not the invalids, not the blind who of course could not be labeled collaborators.
     Although over 150,000 Roma and Hashkalija have fled Kosovo, their ancestral homeland for the past seven hundred years, there are still 40,000 trying desperately to stay. But despite the UN's declaration of preparing a multi-ethnic society and the claim of NATO and KFOR to protect everyone, the results only point to a policy of genocide---- genocide of the Roma and Hashkaija today in Kosovo.
     Roma today in Kosovo can not venture outside their own village without being kidnapped or killed. Roma today in Kosovo are always turned down by Albanian hospitals. Roma today in Kosovo can not attend Albanian schools. Roma today in Kosovo have lost their jobs.
     But perhaps worst of all, Roma today in Kosovo are being discriminated against by the major aid agencies that are mainly run by local Albanians. Since the war, over 90% of all Roma/Hashkalija communities have been refused aid by agencies such as Mother Teresa, and ironically by Islamic Relief, although all Roma and Hashkalija remaining in Kosovo today are
Muslim. Even an international aid agency with a renowned reputation such as Oxfam has not escaped this discrimination being practiced by its own local Albanians in Prishtina.
     But perhaps the worst offender of all is UNHCR. Their policy towards the Roma they should be looking after can best be described by an incident that happened a few weeks ago when UNHCR was asked how they were preparing one of their displaced persons camps for the winter. At a meeting attended by KFOR and Oxfam, the UNHCR director of the Roma camp in question said: "We have no plans for them this winter. We just hope they will disappear."
     And disappearing they were until Macedonia closed their borders to Roma and Hashkalija seeking to survive the draconian measures of UNHCR in Kosovo. At the main UNHCR displaced person's camp in Kosovo, just outside Prishtina, there have been four recorded deaths in the past few weeks only because the UN police and the camp management refused to take sick Roma children to hospital at night. In one incident, at 1:30 in the morning, a
UN policemen refused to take a pregnant woman to hospital although her water had already broke and she was having contractions every two minutes. He told the aid agency worker who was on night duty that, "the gypsies have a tractor in camp. They can take her on the tractor."
     When local Albanians see the discrimination perpetrated by international aid agencies and the UN organizations, why should the Roma be respected those who won the war.
      The war in Kosovo is supposedly over. But this winter more Roma and Hashkalija may die than all the Serbs and Albanians during the war.
    That is the situation today in Kosovo.!

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Prejudice Rules Against Asylum Seekers



published in
he Independent
of United 

This text is 
a summary 


Britain's system of dealing with asylum claims has been described as "institutionally racist" after an adjudicator hearing the case of a Czech Gypsy said that black people use their skin colour as an "excuse" for claiming they suffer from discrimination.
 The adjudicator, who was handling an appeal against a Home Office decision to reject the man's claim for asylum, also likened police prejudice towards Gypsies to "the kind of pet hates we all have". The comments were found in a "determination", or report, compiled by the Immigration Appellate Authority, part of an executive agency of the Lord Chancellor's Department which deals with all claims turned down by the Home Office.
    Human rights and asylum groups have seized on the report as evidence of "endemic racism" in the asylum system and have drawn parallels with the Macpherson report into the murder of Stephen Lawrence, which described the Metropolitan Police as "institutionally racist". They claim that many adjudicators sitting on asylum appeals panels are "politically unreconstructed".
Nick Hardwick, chief executive of the Refugee Council, said he was "appalled" by the language. "This illustrates perfectly why many of us have so little confidence in the asylum decision-making process. It is part of the phenomenon of institutionalised racism which needs to be tackled with vigour," he said.
    Like many Gypsies, or Roma, as they prefer to be called, Petr Hub cited three reasons for claiming asylum: that he had suffered persecution and violence because of his ethnic origin, that the Czech police did nothing to help him, and he had been excluded from jobs and education of his choice.
    The report, which has been revealed as the Immigration and Asylum Bill makes its way through Parliament, suggests that many people use claims of persecution as an excuse. "Sometimes discrimination is real, sometimes of course it is imaginary and used as an excuse by the disadvantaged person, as one often hears it said, 'it's because I am black' in the United Kingdom," wrote the adjudicator, listed only as "L J Smith".
     Mr Smith adds that it is natural for policemen to hold prejudices, such as anti-Gypsy views. "Although they should try and put them on one side, they are human like everybody else, and we all have our pet hates or dislikes, no matter how we try and disguise them," he writes.
    Mr Hub admitted that he often did not bother to report attacks because he felt the police would take no action. Mr Smith observes that "if people do not report anything to the police then they cannot complain that the police do not give them the protection to which they claim they are entitled".
    Mr Smith says that he "generally accepts" Mr Hub's evidence, but does not feel it qualifies him for asylum. He likens Mr Hub's claim that he was unfairly denied access to college to British students being rejected from Oxford University. "It is so easy for people to use as an excuse when they cannot go to the place they want to, that they are being discriminated against", he said.
Asylum Aid recently published a report detailing 90 cases in which asylum seekers claim to have had unfair hearings and has called for wholesale reform of the appeals procedure. It says many of the UK's 160 adjudicators, the vast majority of who are qualified lawyers, are unfit to hear cases, often pre-judging claims rather than dealing with them on their merits.
    The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has also voiced concerns, saying many adjudicators are out of date with political developments. "The language can be patronising and seem to come from another age", he said.!
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