Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland until I return to the Murcia region of Spain in the Autumn for a month or so
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Thursday, 9 December 2004

UK 'discriminated against Roma' - Law Lords ruling

The UK's 'supreme court', the Law Lords, have decided that the British government's immigration rules discriminated on racial grounds against Roma (Gypsies) seeking entry into the UK. The discrimination involved preventing people, mostly Roma, from boarding UK-bound flights from Prague (Czech Republic). As the Czech Republic is now a member of the EU, this particular problem has disappeared, as EU citizens have free right of movement within the EU.

However, it is salutary that such practices ever occurred and the Home Office must learn lessons for the future. As Amnesty International's director of refugee affairs Jan Shaw said:

"That the government's own asylum policy was being operated discriminatorily is bleakly ironic given that discrimination often lies at the heart of serious human rights abuse, not least in the Czech Republic.

"Discrimination and police ill-treatment of Roma in the Czech Republic are still being reported to us."

Quite.

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