MINELRES: Romania: Ethnic Minority Briefs No. 54

MINELRES moderator minelres@lists.delfi.lv
Wed May 14 16:57:20 2003


Original sender: Mediafax <divers_buletin-admin@mediafax.ro> 


No. 54 / May 12, 2003 
  
DIVERS
- reporting ethnic diversity - 
 
SUMMARY 

 
1. NEW HUNGARIAN ORGANISATION SEEKS AUTONOMY... 
2. ...AND BUCHAREST STARTS INVESTIGATION INTO ITS CALL FOR AUTONOMY
3. HOLOCAUST MONUMENT UNVEILED IN CENTRAL ROMANIA
4. NAME OF "WASS ALBERT” SCHOOL IN MUGENI, CHANGED
5. EMPLOYMENT PROGRAMME FOR ROMA PEOPLE

 

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NEW HUNGARIAN ORGANISATION SEEKS AUTONOMY... 
ODORHEIU SECUIESC – Over 1,000 ethnic Hungarians decided on April 26 to
establish a new organization called The National Council of ethnic
Hungarians from Transylvania. The organization, made mainly from
representatives of radical wing of the Democratic Union of Hungarians in
Romania (UDMR), is asking for territorial and cultural autonomy and
claimed to have set up the basis for local self-governance by ethnic
Hungarians in Romania. Besides, the speakers at the forum heavily
criticized leaders of the UDMR for having "abandoned" the goal of
self-determination and territorial autonomy and discussed options for
separate participation in next year’s local elections. Previously, the
leader of the new National Council presented 20 proposals for amending
the Romanian Constitution. One of these envisages changing the country's
definition as a "national and unitary state" to that of "a state based
on the rule of the law -- sovereign, independent, social, and
democratic." Another proposal grants national minorities the right of
self-administration in economic, social, political, and cultural
affairs. Transylvania has historically been a center of territorial and
ethnic disputes between Hungarians and Romanians. (DIVERS)  


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...AND BUCHAREST STARTS INVESTIGATION INTO ITS CALL FOR AUTONOMY
BUCHAREST – Romanian Prime Minister Adrian Nastase on April 26 asked the
Prosecutor-General's Office to investigate calls for territorial
autonomy that were made by leaders of the country's Hungarian diaspora
at the Odorheiu Secuiesc forum, Radio Free Europe reported. The
government said in a 29 April statement that "while fully observing the
right to free association," Nastase requested the investigation because
the National Council of Hungarians named "cultural and territorial
autonomy" as one of its objectives. Former UDMR Chairman Lazlo Tokes,
who was elected honorary chairman of the new National Council of
Hungarians, said it is "a pity" the government is taking judicial
measures against political actions that fall under the right of free
expression.  


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HOLOCAUST MONUMENT UNVEILED IN CENTRAL ROMANIA
TIRGU MURES – The first monument of Holocaust in Romania, in the memory
of victims subject to fascist terror, was unveiled on Sunday, May 4, at
Tirgu Mures. The monument on which it was graved “Remember Holocaust”,
in Hebrew and English languages, was financed by Ministry of Culture and
Faiths. In addition, on the monument it was placed a tiny plate
including an inscription mentioning the atrocities were committed by the
Fascist Magyar government, which used to govern Ardealul de Nord
(Northern Transylvania) in 1944. This inscription stirred protests among
some representatives of some ethnic Hungarians. They indicated that the
monument is dedicated to the victims of Holocaust, but not to their
executioners. Initially, Jewish community from Mures decided this
inscription should not be present on the monument, yet subsequently they
reconsidered it. Hokahen Menachem, the great Rabbi of Romania, said that
Holocaust stood for a painful moment and expressed his bewilderment
towards the attitude of the people on that time, as they did not take
measures to stop Jewish extermination. In his opinion, sending the
Jewish to death represented only the completion of an action
systematically deployed and drawn up for a long time. (DIVERS) 


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NAME OF "WASS ALBERT” SCHOOL IN MUGENI, CHANGED
MIERCUREA CIUC – The name of "Wass Albert” school in Mugeni locality,
Harghita County, was changed through a decision issued on Tuesday, May
6, by the Local Board of the communal. According to the decision in
question, the new name of the education institution is "Scoala no. 1
Mugeni". Two weeks ago, the Local Board of Mugeni communal headed to
Prefect’s Office Harghita a decision draft, through which demanding
temporary suspension of the decision made by the prefect, that is to
change the name of secondary school from the locality by the time the
rehabilitation trial of Wass Albert has been finalized. The prefect of
Harghita County, Mircea Dusa, informed the Local Board that unless it
abides by the law, the bodies in charged would be informed about it. As
a result, the local councilors decided for the school no longer be named
as the controversial Wass Albert, charged with war crimes on Romanian
territory. Mircea Dusa underlined he is glad about local authorities
from Mugeni understood the law must be observed and about they changed
the name of the school. Prefect of Harghita made the decision to change
the name of the school in Mugeni on March 31, as a result of the
ordinance interdicting the use of fascist, racist or xenophobe symbols,
and also banning glorification of persons guilty of having committed
crimes against peace and mankind. (DIVERS)


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EMPLOYMENT PROGRAMME FOR ROMA PEOPLE
BUCHAREST – Job Recruitment National Agency (ANOFM) last week organized
a job bourse meant for Roma ethnicity people. Almost 480 economic
operators announced participation by offering 6,562 jobs, of which 5,000
meant only for Roma people. Most jobs are part of industry of ready-made
clothes and textile industry, constructions, agriculture, public
administration and wood processing industry. Job bourse dedicated to
ethnic Roma is the second programme of positive discrimination initiated
in Romania, following the education programme, which offers the young
Roma people special seats in faculties. (DIVERS)


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DIVERS is a weekly news bulletin edited by the Mediafax News Agency with
financial support from 
Ethnocultural Diversity Resource Center (EDRC) in Cluj.
For now, the full version of the bulletin is only available in Romanian
and can be found at www.divers.ro
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