What rights for Romani women?

3163666With approximately 12.000.000 people, Romani are the biggest minority living in Europe, and the most discriminated, according to a report published by Amnesty International.

Romani – a term which encompasses different groups- have endured a constant persecution during the 20th century; victims often forgotten of the Nazi genocide (between 200.000 and 1.500.000 were killed during World War II), in the post-war era they suffered a constant political and cultural marginalisation, when not pure violence: some countries, like the Czech Republic and Slovakia, used to forcibly sterilise women – a practice ruled as humiliating but not discriminatory by the European Court of Human Rights in 2012.

Still today, they mostly live at the edge of the communities where they are settled and their living conditions are dramatically worse than the average European population. More than 80% lives in poverty, their life expectancy at birth is 10 years less than non-Romani people, the infant mortality between 2 and 6 times higher, and the level of literacy so low that only 31% of Roma in Europe has completed primary school.

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