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Council tries to ban Roma from pubs

THE MUNICIPAL council of Diakovce in the Nitra region has drawn up a list of names of people it has labelled “problematic Roma citizens” in an attempt to get them banned from entering local pubs. The council action, which the local mayor vetoed, came in response to a recent violent incident at a pub in the village, the Sme daily reported.

THE MUNICIPAL council of Diakovce in the Nitra region has drawn up a list of names of people it has labelled “problematic Roma citizens” in an attempt to get them banned from entering local pubs. The council action, which the local mayor vetoed, came in response to a recent violent incident at a pub in the village, the Sme daily reported.

The altercation in the pub involved five local residents, age 15 to 50, who allegedly attacked a 68-year-old customer, leaving him with head injuries. When police were called to deal with the situation, a 15-year-old young man pointed a gun at them and threatened to shoot. Four persons were charged with disorderly conduct.

The mayor of Diakovce and local council members claim the police mishandled the intervention and subsequently wrote a letter to police president Jaroslav Spišiak to complain about what they called “unbearable Roma problems” in the village, Sme wrote.

“In the evening people are afraid to leave their homes, it’s normal for [Roma] to carry knives, speak obscene language, and they are most daring after they’ve had a drink,” an unnamed Diakovce citizen told Sme.

The local council proposed to ban some Roma from local pubs with a decree but the mayor, László Hajdu, refused to sign it because he believed it violated human rights and instead recommended that pub owners hire their own security service, Sme reported, adding that Hajdu said he is planning to start projects in the village aimed at Roma inclusion.

“They get €60 [a month]; if you had such an income, you would go stealing too,” the mayor told Sme. “It’s easy to say they should go to work, but nobody wants them; the state has forgotten them.”


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