F_0020895_17369 - ALTERNATIVES Turkish Journal of International Relations Vol 9 No 3 Fall 2010 pp 1-7 Roma Question Reflecting the Internal Debate

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ALTERNATIVES: Turkish Journal of International Relations Vol. 9, No. 3, Fall 2010, pp. 1-7 Roma Question: Reflecting the Internal Debate within the European Union Dhananjay Tripathi * Abstract The European Union in contemporary international relations is presumed as a regional organization dedicated for promotion of human rights, rule and law and governance. The EU has an image of a normative international power but contrary to it several issues in past raises serious questions on its liberal political, social and organizational structures. Roma population is the single largest ethnic minority in Europe but lately faced several problems. The decision of the French government to deport Roma settlers from its territory led to intense debate on human right issues in the EU. This article focuses on the debate and how it is linked with overall international impression of the EU. Key words: Roma Crisis, Human Rights, European Image Introduction French President Nicolas Sarkozy gets involved in another controversy when in August, 2010 his government announced that Roma immigrants will be deported from France. According to President Sarkozy, “the problems created by the behaviour of certain travellers and Roma,” whose nomadic lifestyles lead to “no assimilation into communities” they live near. The problem began when in the July group of Roma had clashed with Police in the Southern city of Grenoble and Central town of Saint Aignan. Taking cognizance of the incident, government of France announced that it will deport Roma population from the country. More than 51 camps of Roma settlers are disbanded in France and by the end of this year 300 more camps will be disbanded. * Dr., Associate Research Fellow, Centre for Strategic Studies and Simulation, United Service Institution of India, New Delhi, INDIA, + 91-9312691435, http://www.dhananjayjnu.blogspot.com/ ; Email: [email protected] .
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2 Dhananjay Tripathi Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, Vol. 9, No. 3, Fall 2010 As per the government decree, Roma who agree to leave have each received 300 euros, an additional 100 euros for each child and a free flight to their homeland. The action of French government is criticised by the European Union (EU) institutions, human right groups and by several EU member states. The French government defended its action claiming that these camps are sources of illegal trafficking, of profoundly shocking living standards, of exploitation of children for begging, of prostitution and crime. Although there are no available official figures but according to some independent studies around 300,000 to 500,000 Roma are in France that is around 0.64% of its total population. Who are Roma?
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F_0020895_17369 - ALTERNATIVES Turkish Journal of International Relations Vol 9 No 3 Fall 2010 pp 1-7 Roma Question Reflecting the Internal Debate

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