April 08, 2019
WASHINGTON, DC – On International Roma Day, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum welcomes efforts in Congress and in US embassies around the world to recognize the genocide against Europe’s Roma at the hands of the Nazis and their collaborators, to honor the Romani community and culture, and express concern about continuing violence directed against Romani populations.
In light of the history of the persecution of Roma, which culminated during the Holocaust when at least 250,000 Roma were targeted and murdered by the Germans and their allies, the Museum remains deeply concerned by violence and discrimination against Romani communities in Europe today. In March, vigilante gangs carried out a series of violent attacks against Roma in the suburbs of Paris. On April 3, far-right groups led violent protests against Romani families in suburban Rome. Violence against Roma is common in many other European nations as well.
Member of the Czech Parliament Miloslav Rozner continues to remain immune from prosecution on the charges of genocide denial filed against him for referring to the Lety concentration camp—which served as a transfer station to Auschwitz for Roma from the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia—as a “non-existent pseudo-concentration camp” in 2018.
The Museum welcomes the introduction of bipartisan House and Senate Resolutions (H.Res.292) and S.Res.141) by Representatives Alcee Hastings and Steve Watkins, and Senators Roger Wicker and Ben Cardin. Representative Hastings and Senator Wicker are, respectively, Chair and Co-Chair of the US Helsinki Commission. House and Senate passage will help raise awareness about the history of the Romani people, the richness of Romani culture, and to unequivocally reject the dehumanization of Roma and any violence directed against their communities.
A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. Its far-reaching educational programs and global impact are made possible by generous donors. For more information, visit ushmm.org.
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