Salvini’s comments on cataloguing Roma people a reminder of darkest days of European history
S&D MEPs have strongly criticised comments from Italian Interior minister Matteo Salvini following his proposal for ethnic registration of Roma people in Italy.
S&D Group Spokesperson on Roma issues, Soraya Post said: “The new far-right Italian government, with the League and 5 Star Movement, has started a war against Roma people and other people that do not fit their racist view of society. The Italian government has a deeply anti-democratic agenda; they do not respect the motto of the European Union “United in diversity” nor human rights. Interior Minister, Matteo Salvini’s proposal on ethnical registration of Roma people is against Italian and EU law. As a minister in an EU member state, he must respect the values of our European Union where minorities have the same rights. This is not the first time he is spreading hate towards Roma people, but I hope it is the last time. We cannot accept registers based on ethnicity, we have seen what this has led to in the past in Europe. It is high time for the European Commission to launch an infringement procedure against this Italian government concerning Roma people’s housing situation, which NGOs and I have been calling for, for several years.”
S&D Group MEP Cécile Kyenge added: “With his proposal of cataloguing Roma people, Interior Minister Matteo Salvini shows that he wants to establish a real register of exclusion. At certain moments in the recent past, these kinds of operations have led to ethnic cleansing operations. The presumption of racial superiority by a representative of the League confirms his vision of society, where with fury and punitive measures he wants to persecute certain categories of citizens, guilty of their identity and of their “ethnic” belonging. We must firmly oppose this xenophobic drift that points the finger at those that are different.“