Businessman and civil activist Alojz Hlina set up an illegal settlement in downtown Bratislava on Tuesday, August 30, he reported on his blog the same day. The settlement was set up in front of the headquarters of the Slovak Association of Towns and Villages (ZMOS) in Bezručová Street.
"We assume that the plot on which the settlement was set up is in the ownership of the state – in this specific case the Agriculture Ministry. The state and the local authority have an excellent opportunity to show how to proceed in such cases. Will they act resolutely, with energy and without any compromise? Or...? We're really curious," Hlina wrote, as reported by the TASR newswire.
Hlina said he had decided to set up the illegal settlement – which also includes several goats, judging by a picture published on his blog – in front of ZMOS, as the association has declined to co-operate with his activities aimed at supporting non-Roma affected by Roma settlements, which are often illegal. The activist became interested in the issue earlier this year in the wake of the case of Oskar Dobrovodský from Malacky (Bratislava Region). A large Roma family moved to Dobrovodský’s immediate neighbourhood a few years ago. He says he has since suffered daily harassment and that the local Roma have built shacks illegally on his land. The police have been called several hundred times to the site over the past few years.
Hlina is a local businessman, and owner of several city-centre restaurants. He launched an election run for mayor of Bratislava in 2010 but withdrew his nomination at the last moment.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
31. Aug 2011 at 10:00