Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Hungarian government denies Roma flee

Hungary Around 400 police took Friday afternoon Gyöngyöspata village, a town of about 2,800 inhabitants in northern Iraq after that international agencies alleged that several hundreds of Roma were fleeing in buses from a paramilitary group. Several members of the extreme right, including their leader, Tamás Eszes, were arrested and, after interrogation, the Hungarian government spokesman, Peter Szijjarto, has denied that there has been any threat against the Roma.

"The departure of the Red Cross bus to Budapest had nothing to do with attacks on the Roma, but with a tour scheduled for some time for Good Friday," he said. "Reports of an emergency evacuation is a complete lie," denied, to exculpate the paramilitary group Vedera (Defence Force), which held a weekend meeting near the said town and for which intended maneuvers.

Similar maneuvers planted fear last March, when some 2,000 right-wing men carrying flags marched through the streets of a Gypsy neighborhood intimidating the population. This time, apparently, Vedera was planned like a military training maneuvers. The source of the news that left the evacuation released Friday was the leader of the Movement for Civil Rights of Gypsies, Aladar Horvath, who accused the government of Budapest of not taking adequate security measures to protect the Roma population the intimidating presence of the paramilitaries.

Horvath said he had "asked for help from the Red Cross to help us to evacuate women and children. You are afraid and want to be safe during the Easter holidays."

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