About seventy Sinti and Roma occupied the office of the EU-Commission in Bonn to draw attention to the fact that Germany is continuing to deport Roma to the former Yugoslavia despite the fact that the European parliament is considering an appeal by the Roma National Congress (RNC) against the deportations.
On 24 October, the family of Idriz Bajramov, a Roma from the former Yugoslavia, was arrested and deported, three days later, to Skopje in Macedonia. According to the RNC this is in violation of an agreement made with the interior minister of Baden-Württemberg who had agreed to halt the deportations while the procedure at the European parliament was in progress and had authorised district authorities to extend the refugees’ residence permits. The RNC are now worried that the 200 Roma in Baden-Württemburg could be threatened by similar measures to those taken against the Bajramov family.
The district administration in Pforzheim has refused to accept that there is any persecution of the Roma in Macedonia. In the case of the Bajramov family, the authorities argue that there was a ‘public interest’ in deporting the family as Mr. Bajramov had been prosecuted several times for leaving the city limits which, as a refugee, he is not entitled to do. Justifying the fact that the family were not given the right of appeal, the district authorities argued that the ‘public interest’ was more important than the right of the individual to pursue legal means in order to prove his case
The RNC has also alleged that the state of Schleswig-Holstein had chartered a plane especially for the purpose of deporting Roma who had become stateless after the break-up of Yugoslavia.