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Parliamentary committee acknowledges ombudswoman’s report on Roma raid

The parliamentary committee for human rights acknowledged on August 27 four versions of the controversial police raid in the Budulovská Roma settlement in Moldava nad Bodvou: the version submitted by the police, that of government proxy for Roma Peter Pollák, the report of the Public Defender of Rights and ombudswoman Jana Dubovcová, and the ETP Slovensko non-governmental organisation.

The parliamentary committee for human rights acknowledged on August 27 four versions of the controversial police raid in the Budulovská Roma settlement in Moldava nad Bodvou: the version submitted by the police, that of government proxy for Roma Peter Pollák, the report of the Public Defender of Rights and ombudswoman Jana Dubovcová, and the ETP Slovensko non-governmental organisation.

All versions differ, the Sme daily wrote, adding that Dubovcová complained that police did not give her their complete report on the operation, during which Roma were allegedly beaten and their houses were searched without warrants. MPs in the committee could not agree on which version reflected reality and they refused to hear from any of the Roma involved, arguing that the committee is not an investigative body.

Speaker of Parliament Pavol Paška will now decide whether parliament will hear Dubovcová’s report. However, he refused to disclose his decision in advance for Sme. Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák claimed that the police officers did not violate the law, but he also said that raids of this nature would not be repeated in the future.

In the end, the committee unanimously acknowledged the report, but due to the missing votes of the ruling Smer party, it refused to recommend that Paška include the special report in parliament’s September agenda. Head of Smer caucus Jana Laššáková explained, as quoted by the TASR newswire, that it was up to Paška’s personal will. Head of the parliamentary committee for human rights Rudolf Chmel (Most-Híd) opined that Smer simply lacks the will to debate the report at a plenary session.

Several officials and MPs, including Pollák, praised the report for pointing out real problems in the Roma community.

(Source: Sme, TASR)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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