about us | newsletter | contact | archive | members area
Mihai Patrascu, evoMAG
Competition is beneficial to the end customer»
  Features:      COUNTRY FOCUS   |   SECTOR ANALYSIS   |

Sarkozy's party picks on EU's weakest with attacks on Roma and Romania

French President Nicholas Sarkozy’s patronage of his Government’s policy of smashing up Roma camps and expelling the community from France to Romania and Bulgaria contained one serious error – it picked on a race

October 2010 - From the Print Edition

If the leader had stated that he was expelling criminals, there would have been no reason for international outrage and the move may have been legally defensible under European laws on public security.
But with documents revealing the Government was destroying illegal Roma camps as a “priority” and Roma civil rights groups doubting the French probed every evicted Roma family to see whether they - or their children - were a ‘public threat’ to France, it becomes clear that this was a racially-motivated act.
If any country is going to pick on a race, the Roma seem to be the most convenient target. The community lacks a national voice to protest. Within the EU, precedents of disbanding Roma camps already exist in Italy. Also - it has to be said - there is a strong criminal element within many Roma communities which needs to be tackled at a social and security level. Large number of migrant Roma are also citizens of the two poorest EU nations, Romania and Bulgaria, who have to maintain a careful political relationship with Europe’s bigger and richer nations.
To expel almost any other nationality would have been unimaginable. The idea of airlifting the entire Estonian expat community from Paris to Tallinn because a few Estonians have been pickpocketing on the streets of Paris would never happen - and one does not want to even think of the implications of targeting races associated with religion. But the rule seems to be - if this offends the Romanians and Bulgarians, so what? And if the Roma are angry - who is going to call up the Elysee Palace and complain? Joaquin Cortes? The Gypsy Kings?
On the upside, this is an issue where the European Commission has an opportunity to reveal its role to the rest of Europe. EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding’s sturdy comments that France’s expulsions were “a disgrace” needed to be voiced by the suits in Brussels.
The French people themselves also see through the hypocrisy evident in elements of their leadership, with Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner - a man with a hands-on knowledge of Roma social issues - at least coming out and expressing shock.
The French initiative is humiliating for Bucharest. Last September President Traian Basescu stated that France is Romania’s key strategic partner in the EU. France is one of the top three investors in Romania and Bucharest needs Paris’s backing for the EU to continue its large subsidies to agriculture.
Basescu was silent on condemning France’s actions and instead he appealed to the French to honour European Union laws. The irony here is that Romania is playing by the EU rules, while Paris is flaunting them.
As if Bucharest was not suffering enough, French ruling party UMP officials have made comments implying that Romania’s hope of entering the Schengen zone of free European in April 2011 is conditioned on the country’s record on Roma integration.
In the European playground, it seems Romania has finally found a role – as a bully victim.

Michael Bird



COMMENTS
There are 0 comments:

 
ADD A COMMENT
 
Name
Email
Comment
Validation Code
   
 
 

0 Comments  |  29368 Views
Daily Info
EIB offers Romania 13 billion Euro financing in 25 years

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted Romania 13 billion Euro worth of loans since starting its operations in the country, in 1992, according to a report of the insti...

Germanos stores in Romania rebrand into Telekom

Telekom Romania, the second-biggest telecom group on the local market, has started the rebranding process of the Germanos shops into Telekom.

OMV Petrom doubled its profit last year

OMV Petrom had a 2.49 billion RON profit in 2017, more than double than it had recorded in 2016 (1.04 billion RON), according to a report by the company.

Complet Electro Serv appoints Cristian Laza as new CEO

Complet Electro Serv, part of Altex Romania, has appointed Cristian Laza as CEO of Complet Electro Serv, producer and distributor of electric-IT equipments.

Mol Group posts highest profit in a decade in 2017

Mol Group announced its financial results for 2017. Mol increased its EBITDA by 14 per cent outperforming its 2017 target on the back of a strong financial and operational del...

 
 
   
advertising

advertising

advertising

advertising

More on Features
Romanian business: There is still room for improvement

Romania is still an attractive market for investors within South-eastern Europe, with advantages in terms of labour cost and skilled professionals. But local entrepreneurs ...

1 Comment

Digital Banking: Challenges and opportunities

Digitalization is radically transforming the banking industry, enabling new products, services and business models. This transformation will take time to complete, forcing ...

2 Comments

Logistics industry: Growing demand

The industrial, logistics and office sectors in Bucharest were the drivers of the real estate development market in the first nine months of the year.

Telecom industry: Keeping pace with next-gen tech

The telecom industry is transforming before our very eyes. And in many instances, there are no hard-set rules for the new digital platforms, tools and lifecycles in which t...

2 Comments

Digital transformation of energy management and automation

Interview with Marius Persinaru, Country President Schneider Electric Romania & Republic of Moldavia

6 Comments

Principles Governing Foreign Investments in Romania

The legal regime of foreign investments in Romania is governed by the principle of equal treatment, which means that, subject to the principle of most-favoured-nation treat...

Austrian investments in Romania: Companies are generally happy with market development

Austrian investors see Romania as an excellent investment destination and the largest market in South-Eastern Europe. Romania represents a resourceful country, dominated by...

1 Comment