Strasbourg, 29 March 2004 MG-S-ROM (2003) 14

SPECIALIST GROUP ON ROMA, GYPSIES AND TRAVELLERS
(MG-S-ROM)

16th meeting

27-28 November 2003

___________________________________________

MEETING REPORT

Requests

Deadlines

17th MG-S-ROM meeting in Strasbourg

Mon-Tue. 29-30 March 2004

Send the reply to the questionnaire on Social Rights of Nomadic Populations
[MG-S-ROM 2003) 1 rev]
So far26 replies received from Andorra, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Moldova, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom.

new deadline:
1st March 2004

Send comments to the draft Recommendation on Improving the housing conditions of Roma and Travellers in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2002) 13 rev. 2]
So far comments received from CDMG members from the Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and a Greek independent expert [MG-S-ROM (2003) 6 rev2].

deadline for submission:
23 February 2004

ad hoc drafting meeting:
Friday, 27 February 2004

Send comments to the draft Recommendation on Improving Access of Roma to Health Care, Treatment and Outcome for Roma/Gypsies and Travellers in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2003) 4 prov]
So far comments received from Bulgaria and Germany [MG-S-ROM (2004)3].

29 February 2004

ad hoc drafting meeting:
Friday, 26 March 2004
(cancelled)

Send comments to the draft Recommendation on Policies towards Roma/Gypsies in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2002) 3 rev.2]
So far comments received from Bulgaria and Germany
[MG-S-ROM (2003)3 rev1]

29 February 2004

meeting foreseen
mid-May 2004

I. ADOPTION OF THE DRAFT AGENDA AND THE PREVIOUS REPORT

    1. The Chair, Mr. Mirga (Poland), welcomed new members of the Group (Ms. Vesselinova from Bulgaria, Ms. Kliamakis from Greece, and Mr. Naysmith from the United Kingdom) who briefly introduced themselves, as well as Ms. Fernandez from the Fundación Secretariado General Gitano (FSGG), a Spanish NGO, who also participated for the first time in a MG-S-ROM meeting at the request of the Council of Europe Development Bank.

    2. The Chair recalled the official procedure for nomination of members of the Group. He indicated that the Netherlands, Spain and Ukraine had not yet complied with the rules and urged these member states to do so as soon as possible. The Chair also announced that the Czech Republic had recently submitted two candidates to the Bureau of the CDMG, which decided to nominate Ms. Balazová, a young Roma journalist (absent at this meeting).

    3. Mr. Gheorghe (Romania) informed the Group that it was his last attendance as a member of the Group. The Vice-Chair thanked him on behalf of the Group for his active participation in the work of the MG-S-ROM and his valuable input.

    4. The Group adopted the draft annotated agenda [MG-S-ROM (2003)9] and the report of its fifteenth meeting [MG-S-ROM (2003)8 prov.2 now MG-S-ROM (2003) 8].

II. ROUND TABLE ON RECENT DEVELOPMENTS

    a) Intervention by Slovak Ambassador Lamperová

    5. Ms. Lamperová, Permanent Representative of the Slovak Republic to the Council of Europe, thanked the Group and its Chair, for giving her the possibility to inform them about developments in Slovakia - as agreed at the last meeting of the Group [see meeting report MG-S-ROM (2003) 8] - following the allegations expressed in the report Body and Soul, which had a vast echo at national and international level. She mentioned the report and recommendations of Ms McKafferty of the Social and Health Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, the follow-up meeting of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities in July, as well as bilateral talks on this particular subject between the Permanent Representation of the Slovak Republic to the Council of Europe and the Secretary General, Mr. Schwimmer, the Deputy Secretary General, Ms. De Boer-Buquicchio and the Commissioner for Human Rights, Mr. Robles. The latter also visited Slovakia in September. Mr Paul Csaky, the Vice Prime Minister in charge of Human Rights and Minorities will visit the Council of Europe on 9 December 2003 and will meet with the three above-mentioned officials.

      Ambassador Lamperová then referred to the measures taken by the Slovak Government to respond to these serious accusations. An expert team composed of three women and one man, originated from different areas in Slovakia, was set-up. All interviews were recorded on video. The Slovak authorities deeply regret that the authors of the report Body and Soul did not assist the investigation by providing the names of victims.

      The conclusion of this investigation is that there are no proofs of violation of human rights through forced sterilisation. There have been however some procedural faults of an administrative character. Legislation was considered obsolete and prosecutions against people who would have made forced sterilisations are maintained [see documents provided by the Slovak delegation in document MG-S-ROM (2003) 17].

    6. Ambassador Lamperová also informed the Group that Slovakia would host the autumn session of the MG-S-ROM in 2004.

    7. The Group thanked Ambassador Lamperová for her intervention and took note of the Slovak Government’s invitation to host the MG-S-ROM during the second half of 2004.

    b) Interventions by MG-S-ROM members

    8. Several members of the Group took the floor to present recent developments in their country [written contributions were compiled in the document MG-S-ROM (2003)17].

    9. Ms. Klajner (Croatia) indicated that a National Comprehensive Programme for Roma had officially been adopted by the Government on 16 October 2003. It aims inter alia to fight against poverty, unemployment, low-level of education and defines priorities of actions. Three millions Euros were allocated in the state budget for 2004.

      In addition, Roma councils have been recently established at local level, which is a new type of participation in decision-making. According to the Constitutional Law for the Rights of National Minorities, Roma councils can establish coordination bodies at state level.

      At the last elections, Roma gained no seat in Parliament despite the possibility offered by law. There are in Croatia eight reserved seats for minorities (three for the Serbs, one for Hungarians, one for Italians and three seats for other twelve minorities, among which Roma is the largest). However, it seems that Roma – who were represented in the elections by several candidates - voted for other minority lists.

    10. Ms Skotvedt (Norway) informed the Group that a group was set-up last spring to discuss forced sterilisation during the period 1934-1974. This working group includes Roma and Travellers.

      She also informed the Group that under the Norwegian presidency of the Council of Europe, a Conference with Young Roma on the topic “alternatives to migration” would be organised1.

    11. Mr. Dubyk (Germany) mentioned three recent developments: a central contact point for minorities was established under the Office of the Federal commissioner for Minorities (which include Roma); a permanent committee for Roma may soon be set-up as is already the case for the Danish minority; the Bundestag set up a round table on national minorities and members of parliament will hold a public hearing with minorities.

      Mr. Dubyk also indicated that new state reports for the Framework Convention for the Protection of national Minorities and the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages are under preparation.

    12. Mr. Drobež (Slovenia) informed the Group that 3,246 Roma were registered in the last census (2002). There are 3,834 Romani speakers in Slovenia.

      He referred also to the existence of 20 Roma organisations active at local level, and the presence of Roma advisers in local municipalities. Training sessions for Roma were organised last October. Roma also created a centre, which collect information and presents radio and TV programmes.

    13. Ms. Kliamakis (Greece) referred to the Integrated Programme for Roma for 2002-2008, which was drafted by the inter-ministerial commissions with the involvement of Roma. It was now entering the second phase. About 265 housing areas were envisaged in this Programme and 74 other sites are foreseen. In the field of education, she mentioned 140 preparatory classes. In the field of health, an information campaign among Roma about regular health checks was organised (good results in Thessaloniki). Professional trainings were organised to increase Roma employment. Four cultural centres for children and parents were opened. They include cultural activities, and workshops (photography, music, etc.).

    14. Ms. Vesselinova (Bulgaria) referred to the Framework Programme for the Equal integration of Roma in the Bulgarian Society and the recently adopted Plan of Action for October 2003-December 2004 [see detailed presentation in MG-S-ROM (2003)17].

    15. Mr. Tolkalin (Russian Federation) informed the Group about the results of the last census, which indicate a Roma population of 182,000 persons. An experts’ group on Roma was set up by Minister Zorin. Prominent Roma experts joined this experts’ group. Mr. Tolkalin participates in this Group on behalf of the ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    16. Mr. Semenenko (Ukraine) underlined the most urgent problems faced by Roma in Ukraine (education, employment, health care) and referred to the decision to adopt a state programme for Roma. During the drafting phase, Roma NGOs will be widely consulted. He also mentioned that a kindergarten for Roma children was recently opened in the Transdniestria region.

    17. The Chair (Poland) - Mr. Mirga – indicated that the Polish Ministry of Interior provided the Group with a written text on recent developments concerning Roma [see MG-S-ROM (2003)17]. He indicated that a national programme for Roma had been adopted in 2003 but the Ministry of Finance cut by half the originally allocated funds for this programme for 2003 (5 millions Polish zloty instead of 10 millions). It is hoped that in 2004 the full amount will be granted.

    18. Mr. Gheorghe (Romania) mentioned that 56 billions Romanian lei (about 1.7 million Euros) had been allocated for the implementation of the programme for Roma. Only the public administration was eligible for such funding. The money was however sent very late and could not be fully used before the end of the year. In addition, Romania received 6 millions Euros from the PHARE project for 2004 (1.2 million Euros for the training of Roma experts at local level and 1.8 millions for community projects).

    19. Mr. Douma (the Netherlands) requested further information from the Romanian representative regarding the spending of European Commission funds and Romanian budgetary allocations for the implementation of the governmental strategy for Roma in Romania. Mr. Mihalache (ERRC) claimed that not all the funds mentioned could be allocated due to administrative delays and procedures and part of this money had even to be transferred back before being spent for projects. The Chair noted that this was an opinion of an NGO representative. The Group may seek further information to be provided by the Romanian governmental official at the next meeting in March.

    20. Mr. Hero (Slovakia) presented the concept of a special programme for Roma children, which is aimed at increasing attendance in secondary school and decreasing drop-outs.

    21. Mr. Naysmith (United Kingdom) indicated that about 150-200,000 Roma, Gypsies and Travellers are living in the UK. The equality Race Directive has been strengthened. The UK is due to submit its 2nd state report pursuant to the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities by the end of May. A draft report was circulated to NGOS, including Gypsy and Traveller NGOs, for comments.

    22. Mr. Grygorichenko (Roma from Ukraine) reported about a meeting of 25 Roma NGOs, which set up an umbrella organisation called the Congress of Ukrainian Roma. He supported the governmental initiative to adopt a national comprehensive programme for Roma and asked for its quick implementation. He regretted that participation of Roma in parliament and local level is still very low in Ukraine. Employment should be a priority as 90% of Roma are unemployed.

c) Intervention by international governmental organisations

    23. Mr. Andrey Ivanov recalled that UNDP had been involved in improving development opportunities for the Roma in Central and Eastern Europe. Besides conducting research and collecting data (“Avoiding the Dependency Trap”) UNDP also designs and implements development projects, both at the regional level, focusing on three major areas: · Community development · Grants-based support and economic development projects · Sustainable income generation and micro-lending.

      Mr. Ivanov indicated that UNDP is involved in the World Bank/OSI Roma Decade. Together with the World Bank, UNDP will be responsible for the data collection aspects of this initiative, particularly in terms of collecting representative socio-economic data and coordinating the experts’ group on the issue. UNDP has started a large-scale data collection project on the status of vulnerable groups in South-Eastern Europe, which may complement the Council of Europe activities conducted under the “Roma Under the Stability Pact” project.

    24. Mr Douma (on behalf of the Dutch presidency of the OSCE) informed the Group about the upcoming adoption2 of the OSCE Action Plan for Roma and Sinti following the work of a working group headed by Ambassador Bota. A press conference shall be organised in Maastricht to mark the event. Mr. Douma recalled that the Action Plan, which covers a wide range of fields, was the result of a consensus made for and with Roma. Both governments and Roma share responsibility for the document. Mr. Douma also highlighted some contradictions of member states during the discussion about the Action Plan, such as Sweden, which was not supporting positive discrimination but, on the other hand, insisted on gender balance. He emphasized that the Action Plan is so far an empty container, which needs to be fill in with political will and financial resources, and coordinated with other initiatives such as the Roma Decade Initiative of the World Bank/Soros Foundation.

    25. Ms. Schwebel and Mr. Catalano (Council of Europe Development Bank) referred to housing projects in Bulgaria (Sofia and Plovdiv), and to a grant (400,000 USD) allocated for a Roma education project on formal and informal education of Roma children in “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia” (with UNICEF as implementation partner) for the period 2003-2004. They also pointed out the recent cooperation with the Fundación Secretariado General Gitano (FSGG), represented at the meeting by Ms. Fernandez, which has been contracted to identify five pilot projects concerning Roma supported by the authorities of EU accession countries of Central Eastern Europe. Two of them shall be selected for funding by the CoE Development Bank. They also mentioned the financial contribution of the Council of Europe Development Bank (Finnish grant) to the World Bank/OSI Conference in Budapest early July.

      The Chair mentioned that he had recently visited Plovdiv and highlighted difficulties regarding the aforementioned project. Mr. Catalano explained the main reasons of these difficulties, which are due to the delay at the municipality level in approving selection criteria, and lack of decision as concerns the land property where the houses are being built. However, a joint commission for selection of Roma families was set up and thirteen families have been already accommodated (about 65 persons) by the Municipality of Plovdiv.

    26. The Group asked the Bulgarian specialist to seek for detailed information about the situation in Plovdiv and report to the Group about the exact situation at its next meeting.

    d) Intervention by non-governmental international organisations

    27. Mr. Mihalache presented inter alia recent ERRC publications (ERRC bi-annual report 2001-2002 and ERRC publication on Personal Documents and Access to Fundamental Rights). He also called for the speedy ratification by governments of Protocol no.12, which would extend the protection against discrimination, especially relevant for Roma. He also referred to the Collective complaint launched against Greece (on Roma and housing issues) in the framework of the collective complaint mechanism of the Revised Social Charter.

    28. Mr. Mirga informed the Group about the upcoming event in Brussels organised by PER in co-operation with the European Commission and scheduled on 8-9 December entitled “EU Accession and Post-Accession – What Role for Elected and Appointed Romani Representatives”. The objectives of this two-day event will be to offer the Roma representatives an opportunity to present their individual experiences, achievements, and obstacles while serving in office, their assessment of Roma policies implementation in accession countries and learning about the future, post-accession policy frameworks of the European Union which can assist the Romani communities. The event will include the Seminar itself at the European Commission, a meeting with parliamentarians at the European Parliament and working sessions with various commissions and bodies at the European Commission. The Romani participants will be 12 officials from Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

e) Intervention by non-governmental international organisations

    29. Various Council of Europe sectors (ECRI, Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities, Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights) made short presentations about recent developments concerning their respective sector, namely publication of reports and country visits [for further information see document MG-S-ROM (2003)10].

    30. In addition, Ms. Sciotti from ECRI informed the Group that the 3rd round of country-by-country approach will start as from mid-January 2004. She also mentioned the 10th anniversary of ECRI, which would be celebrated in Strasbourg on 18 March 2004.

    31. Ms. Nachilo from the Committee on Migration, Refugees and Demography of the Parliamentary Assembly informed the Group about the Parliamentary Assembly Recommendation on the Forced Return of Roma to Serbia and Montenegro from Council of Europe member states, which had just been adopted3 [see MG-S-ROM (2003)17 for details].

    32. Ms. Jensdottir from the Secretariat of the Language Charter for Regional or Minority Languages made a power point presentation [see MG-S-ROM (2003)17]. She indicated that usually the Romani language falls – as a non territorial language – under part II of the Charter, except for Germany (Land of Hessen) and Slovakia. In the latter, the Romani language falls under part III and is given a higher profile. Member states often argue that there is a lack of standardisation of the Romani language, lack of teaching materials in Romani, lack of Romani teachers, lack of interpreters and translators.

      She recalled that the Experts’ Committee of the Language Charter could receive NGO shadow reports in addition to the state reports about the situation of Romani language. She called for closer co-operation between the Charter and the MG-S-ROM, through regular contacts, feedback on monitoring reports or meetings with MG-S-Rom members during country visits. She also suggested considering the organisation of a seminar on the standardisation of the Romani language.

    33. Ms. Marsal of the Secretariat of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities informed the Group that the second cycle of state reports would start in 2004 (for further details, see the aforementioned document). The total number of ratifications is now 35.

    34. Ms. Suikkari from the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights distributed to the Group two recent reports on the Czech Republic and Slovenia.

    35. Ms. Maria Ochoa-Llidó, Head of the Migration and Roma/Gypsies Department, referred to the co-ordination between the CDMG and the MG-S-ROM. The Vice-Chair, M. Marta (Italy), proposed that MG-S-ROM members be invited to the CDMG meetings, and vice-versa.

    36. The Secretariat informed the Group that copies of participants’ presentations or written contributions about recent developments in countries/organisations/CoE sectors would be collected to form a separate document [MG-S-ROM (2003)17]. Participants who wished to have written contributions or their presentations circulated to the Group were kindly requested to submit these documents to the Secretariat by 19 December 2003.

      Other written contributions circulated during the meeting included:

      - written contributions about recent developments submitted by Bulgaria, Poland, Russian Federation and Slovakia [see MG-S-ROM (2003)17];
      - List of countries visited by other sectors of the Council of Europe [MG-S-ROM (2003) 10];
      - 2003 Activity Report: activities relating to Roma, Gypsies and Travellers of the Migration and Roma/Gypsies Department [MG-S-ROM (2003) 11];
      - Co-ordinator’s report of activities for 2003 [see MG-S-ROM (2003)17];
      - Council of Europe Newsletter no.25: activities on Roma, Gypsies and Travellers.

III VISITS TO MEMBER STATES / REVISED TERMS OF REFERENCE

      a. Visits to member states (monitoring)

    37. At the request of the Chair, the Secretariat of the Directorate General of Legal Affairs clarified whether the Group is entitled to carry out monitoring activities. The Group has been informed that, as a Group of Specialists, the MG-S-ROM is not entitled as such to proceed with monitoring mechanism, i.e. conduct monitoring visits. However, the Group could request the Committee of Ministers via the European Committee on Migration (CDMG) to ask member states to submit a report on the implementation of Recommendations pertinent to Roma, Gypsies and Travellers already adopted by the Committee of Ministers, i.e.:

      - Recommendation No R.(2000) 4 on the Education of Roma/Gypsy Children in Europe adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 3 February 2000 at the 696th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies;
      - Recommendation No R.(2001)17 on Improving the Economic and Employment Situation of Roma/Gypsies and Travellers in Europe adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 27 November 2001, at the 774th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies.

    38. The Group took note of this information and asked the CDMG to ask the Committee of Ministers whether this mode of action could be adopted by the Group in its future activities.

    39. Ms. Klajner (Croatia) suggested adopting a legally binding instrument, which would specifically address the Roma. This was not supported by other members of the Group. Mr. Dubyk (Germany) said that provisions of the Framework Convention already apply to the Roma minority.

    40. The Chair remarked that monitoring bodies of the Council of Europe such as the Advisory Committee of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities, the Experts’ Committee of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages, ECRI, and the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights, make use of the Group’s documents and Committee of Ministers’ recommendations on Roma, Gypsies and Travellers, and that practice should be noticed with satisfaction and further encouraged. He suggested that ways should be sought to ensure closer cooperation with existing monitoring mechanisms and bodies within the Council of Europe (consultation, providing materials and contacts on the ground, eventually participation in monitoring visits conducted by aforementioned bodies).

    41. The Group decided therefore to postpone further work and consideration of the draft questionnaire on the implementation of Committee of Ministers recommendations towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers [MG-S-ROM (2003)12].

      b. Working methods of the Group

    42. A proposal was made to analyse the Group’s working methods and improvement in its functioning (time devoted to the follow-up of the work of the Group between regular meetings, circulation of information and documents, assistance by the Secretariat, maximising effects of its work with only two regular meetings).

    43. Questions concerning working methods will be addressed during the next meeting of the Group and the Secretariat will prepare a draft of the topics to be discussed.

      c. Revised Terms of Reference of the Group

    44. The Secretariat recalled that the current terms of reference of the Group [MG-S-ROM (2002) 9] ought to expire on 31 December 2003 and suggested that the Group, while asking the Committee of Ministers via the CDMG to prolong its terms of reference for two years, could decide to amend the text. In this regard the following issues were addressed and concluded.

    45. Taking into consideration information provided by the Directorate General of Legal Affairs, the Chair proposed to delete the word “monitoring” from the terms of reference (item 4) and replace it with “keep under review”. Other amendments regarding item 4 were also proposed (see the final text of the specific terms of reference of the Group in appendix 3).

    46. The Group foresaw a need to strengthen the discipline and proceeding within the Group. Actually, the Group is composed of only 13 full members4 who are not always present, or who are often replaced or have to leave the meeting before the end. The fact that the Group is meeting twice a year with always heavy agendas was also considered as an obstacle to achieving quick progress, hence the proposal to have more ad hoc meetings to work for instance on draft recommendations. The Chair was of the opinion that the Group needed to improve its working methods.

    47. As regards membership (item 5), several delegations expressed the necessity to clarify the composition of the Group, the expected profile for future candidates and the selection procedures. The Chair, supported by Mr. Scicluna (Coordinator for activities concerning Roma/Gypsies), insisted on the need to have highly qualified members of the Group, Roma and non-Roma, from both public administration and civil society.

    48. Under working structures and methods (item 6), the Vice Chair, Mr. Marta (Italy), suggested to include a clear reference to the two regular meetings, as well as to the possibility for the Group to hold ad hoc meetings to progress in its work.

    49. The terms of reference of the MG-S-ROM were amended by the Group and the revised version [MG-S-ROM (2003)15] was subsequently approved by the Chair and Vice-Chair and submitted to the CDMG for approval5 (see appendix 3).

IV. DRAFT RECOMMENDATION ON POLICIES TOWARDS ROMA/GYPSIES IN EUROPE

    50. The Secretariat informed the Group that no comments apart from Germany’s [MG-S-ROM (2003)3] had been received regarding the draft recommendation on Policies towards Roma/Gypsies in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2002)3 rev.2] since the last meeting.

    51. The Chair informed the Group on the current state of drafting of recommendation on policies towards the Roma, Gypsies and Travellers in Europe. He remarked that there has been a serious delay in drafting this recommendation and invited the Group to consider revising the scope and contents of the draft, including a possibility of reviving the working group that has been earlier established to work on this document. He noticed also that in the meantime several states have adopted governmental strategies or programmes for Romani communities and they are in various phases of implementation. The Group has therefore to draw on these new experiences. He mentioned also that several events that took place recently in Europe might contribute to the drafting of the recommendation on policies. Those included the following:

    52. Mr. Scicluna, Coordinator for activities concerning Roma, Gypsies and Travellers presented the results of an inter-department discussion (“transversal project”) held at his initiative on 12 November. He pointed out that various sectors of the Council of Europe have agreed to submit proposals/amendments regarding approved or draft recommendations relevant for Roma, Gypsies and Travellers until end of February 2004.

    53. The Secretariat presented the Report of the Granada European Conference on “Policies towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers” (19-20 May, 2003), which was distributed to the Group. Following a conclusion of this report the Secretariat recommended to the Group to add to the draft recommendation on policies a chapter on evaluation and monitoring. It also recommended renaming this draft to make it more coherent with the work of the Group as follows: “Recommendation on policies towards the Roma, Gypsies and Travellers in Europe”.

    54. Mr. Alan Phillips – former First Vice-President of the Advisory Committee on the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities and former Director of Minority Rights Group International - presented a concept paper on monitoring and evaluation, which he had prepared together with INTRAC – a British NGO having expertise in these fields [see his full presentation in MG-S-ROM (2003)17].

      He reported that the Granada meeting (May 2003) noted that enormous amounts of money had been spent on implementing policies and projects from which no lessons had been drawn, inter alia because these policies and projects were not effectively monitored and their impact has never been evaluated. Sometimes, measures adopted have a totally different result than expected. Some programmes, which seem successful have the tendency of being replicated before being evaluated and only after years it is discovered that they have undesirable effects. Poor implementation and poor results have led to frustration within the Roma community and increasing distrust in the willingness and ability of the governments to improve the situation.

      He added that only a few Roma programmes have set specific and qualified targets, which provide a basis for monitoring progress. There seems to be confusion between monitoring and evaluation and there is a tendency to consider that internal monitoring carried on by the implementation agencies is sufficient (first type of monitoring). Monitoring by specially created independent agencies and by civil society (second type) is too often disregarded. Mr. Phillips also referred to the work of treaty monitoring bodies of the Council of Europe, such as the Advisory Committee of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities (third type). All these various types of monitoring should be examined. Mr. Phillips also insisted on the participation of Roma in all phases of monitoring and evaluation, which is a unique opportunity to improve the programmes and their implementation.

      He briefly presented a pilot project on monitoring and evaluation [see MG-S-ROM (2003)17].

      Mr. Phillips suggested that the Group might further discuss the matter of evaluation and monitoring and consider including specific provisions regarding these issues in the draft recommendation on policies towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers.

    55. Mr. Douma (the Netherlands) subscribed to Mr. Phillips’ presentation. He recalled that chapter VI and para. 92 of the OSCE Action Plan contemplate effective participation of Roma. The participation of Roma is also needed in the programming phase.

    56. The Group decided to hold an ad hoc meeting to further discuss the draft recommendation and comments made by member states, as well the possibility to include new chapters on monitoring and evaluation.6

    57. Mr. Mancini, Secretariat of the Congress for Local and Regional Authorities of Europe, presented the main conclusions of the Rome International Seminar between Roma and Travellers and Local and Regional Authorities: “Challenges for Cooperation and Integration” that took place on 15 October. He underlined that this Seminar was the result of contacts between the Congress and Mr. Scicluna, Coordinator for activities concerning Roma/Gypsies. The Seminar was attended by the Vice Chair of the Group, Mr. Marta (Italy), as well as by other persons present: Ms. Raykova (Bulgaria) and Mr. Sigona (UK/Italy). Mr. Mancini underlined that this was the first attempt to refocus the work of the Congress on Roma and Travellers issues since the adoption of Congress Resolution 249(1993) on “Gypsies in Europe: Role and Responsibility of Local and Regional Authorities”, Resolution 16(1995) “Contribution of Roma to the Construction of a Tolerant Europe”, and Recommendation 11(1995) on “Towards a Tolerant Europe: the Contribution of Roma (Gypsies). He informed the Group that the Rome meeting had decided to create a network of towns that were well-disposed towards the integration of Roma and Sinti living in their community. The network would be funded through voluntary contributions.

      Mr. Mancini also informed the Group about the willingness of the Congress side to increase cooperation with the MG-S-ROM, particularly in the context of the draft recommendation on policies towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers to ensure that the local and regional dimension is taken into account, as local and regional authorities have a key role in implementing these policies.

    58. Ms. Alexandra Raykova presented the Report of the European Seminar “Cultural Identities of Roma, Gypsies and Related Groups” held in Strasbourg on 15-16 September. She recalled that this was the first event of this kind where representatives of various Roma groups (Roma, Sinti, Kalé) and tribes (Lovari, Kalderash, Ursari, etc.), as well as Roma-related groups (Travellers, Yenish, Ashkali, Egyptians, Beash), had an opportunity to present themselves the main features of their identity, as individuals and as a group, to demystify their culture, as well as to respond to stereotypes by the majority society. It was made clear at the Seminar that some groups share common culture, language and identity (such as Roma and Sinti), while the Travellers, Beash, Ashkali and Egyptians are of different origin than Roma, Sinti and Kalé. They have however in common to be often perceived as “Gypsies” by the majority and face discrimination. She also referred to the discussions around the terminology used at national or international level (“Roma”, “Gypsies”, “Nomadi”, etc.), as well as the impact of identity in terms of policy implementation.

      Ms. Raykova read out the conclusions of the report, including recommendations addressed to the MG-S-ROM, such as:

        · the draft recommendation on policies should include and elaborate a chapter on identity, language and culture of the groups to which the recommendation is addressed;
        · The MG-S-ROM should decide whether the current terminology used, i.e. “Group of Specialists on Roma, Gypsies and Travellers”, is still appropriate, and clarify which are the MG-S-ROM’s target group(s);
        · The Group should examine the relevance of the use of the term “Gypsy”, which is considered as pejorative by a large majority of participants of the Seminar, and the possible replacement of the current terminology “Roma/Gypsies” or “Roma, Gypsies” by “Roma and Sinti”;
        · The Group should clarify whether the Group’s recommendations address the situation of both Roma and Travellers, or if they concern only one of these groups;
        · The MG-S-ROM should decide upon a follow-up seminar on culture and language.

    59. A discussion followed as to: whether the Group should use the opportunity of revising its terms of reference to rename itself, deleting “Gypsies” or adding new terms such as “Sinti” or “Kalé”. Various opinions were expressed. Certain participants felt that using the term “Gypsy” is not only pejorative but also old-fashioned and should now be deleted. Others pointed out the use of “Roma and Sinti” in OSCE framework and called for a harmonisation of the terminology. The Chair pointed out that in certain countries (Hungary, Spain, Portugal…) Roma populations are calling themselves cigany or gitanos, and do not find it derogatory. He also underlined that the Group is not supposed to address identity issues but problems face by certain communities.

    60. The Group thanked Ms. Raykova for this valuable report. It concluded that it was premature to modify the name of the Group but further consideration should be given to this topic. The Group asked the Secretariat to finalise and distribute the report to all participants and to consider organising a follow-up meeting on culture, language and identity in the course of 2004 in view to including elements in the draft recommendation on policies.

      V. TRAVELLERS ISSUES IN EUROPE

      a) Draft recommendation on Movement and Encampment of Travellers in Europe

    61. The Secretariat informed the Group that written comments had been received from the Irish Government in addition to the German and Russian comments, which had already partly discussed at the March meeting.

    62. An ad hoc working group composed of the Chair (Mr. Mirga, Poland), the Vice Chair (Mr. Marta, Italy), Mr. Tolkalin (Russian Federation), Mr. Dubyk (Germany), Mr. Steinberger and Mr. Keller (consultants, France), Mr. Bittel (representative of Roma, Sinti and Travellers from Switzerland), Mr. Collins and Mr. McDonagh (Irish Travellers) met in Strasbourg on 26 November afternoon to discuss the various amendments and propose various options to be decided by the Group in its plenary.

    63. The Group went through the whole draft recommendation and proposed amendments and adopted a revised text. The new draft recommendation on the movement and encampment of Travellers in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2003)16] is appended to this report (appendix 4). It was submitted to the CDMG for approval7.

      b) Study on Social and Economic Rights of Nomadic Populations

    64. As far as the questionnaire on Social Rights of Nomadic Populations is concerned, the Secretariat informed the Group that ten replies had been so far received, i.e. from Andorra, Bulgaria, Estonia, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Lithuania, Moldova, and Norway8. The Secretariat also pointed out that an analytical chart had been drawn up by Ms Rachida Toudert-Benbekhti, who is in charge of assisting the main consultants for this survey (Mr. Steinberger and Mr. Keller), to facilitate the statistical processing of these replies. The analysis of the replies will be made during the first quarter 2004 and the consultants will present the results at the next MG-S-ROM regular meeting.

    65. The Group took note of this information and fixed 19 December the deadline for the remaining member states to reply to this questionnaire.

VI. ROMA AND HEALTH ISSUES

      a) Joint EUMC/CoE/OSCE-HCNM Project “Roma Women and Access to Health Care”

    66. Ms. Tsetsekou from the Secretariat informed the Group about the main conclusions and follow-up of the International Conference on Roma Women and Access to Health Care held in Strasbourg on 11-12 September. The Conference was jointly organised by the Council of Europe, EUMC and the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities. During this Conference, the report “Breaking the barriers”, which had been written by Mrs Anna Pomykala, was presented. This is an analysis of the situation of the health situation of Roma in fifteen member states and their access to public health care services. Copies of this publication were distributed at the meeting.

      b) Draft Recommendation on Promoting Appropriate Health Care Services for Roma and Travellers

    67. As no comments were received to this draft recommendation [MG-S-ROM (2003) 4 prov] since the March session, and due to the fact that the report of the September Conference had just been released, leaving no possibilities to include proposals of actions made at the Conference in the draft recommendation, the Secretariat proposed to postpone the discussion to its next meeting.

    68. The Group took note of the above information and proposed that an ad hoc meeting takes place before its next regular meeting to further discuss the draft recommendation on Promoting Appropriate Health Care Services for Roma and Travellers, and possibly include relevant recommendations of the aforementioned reports/publications.

VII. PROBLEMS IN THE AREA OF HOUSING AND TOWN PLANNING

    69. The Secretariat recalled that the Group adopted the draft recommendation on improving the housing conditions of Roma and Travellers in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2002) 13 rev] at its Dublin meeting in October 2002 and submitted it to the CDMG. The CDMG sent the draft text back to the Group for further examination as a number of CDMG members (Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Italy, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom) had made comments/amendments [MG-S-ROM (2003) 6 rev].

    70. Mr Dubyk (Germany) - who had to leave the meeting before its end - gave to the Secretariat an additional comment from his authorities concerning this draft recommendation.

    71. Mr. Douma (the Netherlands) noted that due to the fact that several specialists had already left the room, it would be preferable to postpone the discussion to the next meeting. This would allow him and other specialists to be better prepared to discuss the amendments proposed.

    72. Ms. Karathanassi, Greek architect and specialist on housing issues, proposed to the Group some amendments, among them to replace “housing” by “habitat” which she considers more appropriate. She highlighted some contradictions in the text and proposed to include a reference to multiculturalism. Due to time constraints, Ms. Karathanassi’s presentation was interrupted and the Chair proposed that she sends written comments to the Group.

    73. The Group decided to postpone the adoption of the draft recommendation on improving the housing conditions of Roma and Travellers in Europe and asked the Secretariat to consider the possibility to organise an ad hoc working group prior to its next regular meeting in order to include in the current draft proposed amendments made by various CDMG members, as well as comments made by consultants.

VIII. FOLLOW-UP OF THE REPLY TO THE RECOMMENDATION 1557 (2002) OF THE PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY

    74. The Secretariat informed the Group about certain developments since the adoption by the Group of a Draft Opinion on Parliamentary Assembly Recommendation 1557 (2002) on the legal situation of the Roma in Europe. In its response to the Parliamentary Assembly, the Committee of Ministers entrusted the MG-S-ROM to “study the proposal of creating a European Solidarity Fund and make concrete proposals” [see paragraph 20 of the reply of the Committee of Ministers to Recommendation 1557 (2002) of the Parliamentary Assembly on the legal situation of the Roma in Europe, which was circulated to the Group].

    75. The Group decided to postpone the discussion on this topic to its next meeting and proposed to invite PAKIV – a European Roma fund for the promotion of social and economic development of Roma in Europe based in Budapest - in order to benefit from their experience.

IX. FRENCH-FINNISH CONTRIBUTION REGARDING THE SETTING-UP OF A EUROPEAN ROMA FORUM

    76. The Coordinator for activities concerning Roma/Gypsies informed the Group about the most recent developments in the preparations for setting up a European Forum for the Roma (recent GT-ROMS documents were distributed to the Group). He said that the Working Party of the Committee of Ministers responsible for examining the possibility of setting up such a Forum had so far met nine times and was currently discussing the aim, functions and membership which such a Forum would have. Discussions on these issues would continue at its next meeting in January. It was also proposed that at its next meeting the Working Party would start examining a draft of the agreement, which the Council of Europe would have with the forum.

    77. The Secretariat informed the Group that the report of the extraordinary meeting of 17 September [MG-S-ROM (2003) 13] had not yet been finalised but the Opinion of the Group had been presented and circulated to the GT-ROMS.

    78. The Group took note of the above information, as well as of the various GT-ROMS documents distributed at the meeting.

X. THEMES TO BE CHOSEN FOR THE 2004 WORK PROGRAMME

    79. The Group decided to continue addressing in 2004 topics chosen for 2003 (i.e. implementation of policies for Roma at the local level, Romani cultures and languages, Trends towards re-nomadisation of certain Roma communities), and to finalise draft recommendations under way (see above).

XI. OTHER BUSINESS

    80. Ms Tsetsekou also presented the results of the internship scheme funded by Open Society Institute-Soros Foundation. Since mid 2002 ten young Roma stagiaires (men and women) from Central and Eastern Europe (Albania, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”) took part in this internship. They assisted the Migration and Roma/Gypsies Department in its activities, attended meetings, drafted reports about the situation of Roma in various member states, and took contacts with other Council of Europe sectors and international organisations.

    81. As this internship is however limited to Central and Eastern European countries, the Secretariat asked members of Western countries to find out any possibilities of financing internship for young Roma or send Roma governmental officials on secondment.

XII. ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE NEXT MEETING

    82. The Secretariat proposed 1-2 April for the next meeting of the Group in Strasbourg9. It reminds the Group that the autumn meeting will be hosted by the Slovak Government.

* * * * *

List of appendices to the report of the 16th Meeting of the MG-S-ROM (27-28 November 2003)

Appendix 1 Agenda

Appendix 2 List of participants

Appendix 3 Revised specific terms of reference of the Group [MG-S-ROM (200315]

Appendix 4 Text adopted by the Group on the draft Recommendation on Movement and Encampment of Travellers in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2003)16]

Appendix 1

Agenda

Thursday, 27 November 2003

From 9h00 to 9h30 Registration of participants

From 9h30 to 10h00

I. ADOPTION OF THE AGENDA AND THE PREVIOUS REPORT

      [MG-S-ROM (2003) 9 rev ; MG-S-ROM (2003) 8 rev.2]

From 10h00 to 13h00

II. ROUND TABLE ON RECENT DEVELOPMENTS

      i) Members of the Group are invited to briefly present the recent developments as regards Roma and/or Travellers in their respective countries (written contributions can be submitted in advance to the Secretariat for distribution)

      ii) International organisations are invited to briefly present their recent activities/projects as regards Roma and/or Travellers (written contributions can be submitted in advance to the Secretariat for distribution)

        § International governmental organisations/institutions
        i. UNDP
        ii. OSCE
        iii. CoE Development Bank

        § International non-governmental organisations
        iv. ERRC
        v. PER

      iii) Various sectors of the Council of Europe are invited to present their recent and upcoming activities focusing on country visits, and to identify possible cooperation synergies between these sectors and the MG-S-ROM [MG-S-ROM (2003) 10 ; Newsletter no.25 ; Activity report concerning the Programme on Policies towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers for the year 2003 MG-S-ROM (2003) 11]

        Coordinator for Activities concerning Roma, Gypsies and Travellers
        Migration and Roma/Gypsies Department
        Commission Against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI)
        Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities
        Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights
        Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE)

      iv) Questions and answers

From 13h00 to14h30 Lunch break

From 14h30 to15h30

III. VISITS TO MEMBER STATES

    [Draft questionnaire on the implementation of CM recommendations towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers – MG-S-ROM (2003) 12; revised mandate of the Group MG-S-ROM (2002) 9; monitoring the situation of Roma/Gypsies in member States MG-S-ROM (2001) 19]

From 15h30 to15h45 Coffee break

From 15h45 to 17h30

IV. DRAFT RECOMMENDATION ON POLICIES TOWARDS ROMA/GYPSIES IN EUROPE [MG-S-ROM (2002) 3 rev. 2 ; German comments to the draft Recommendation MG-S-ROM (2003) 3 ; Report of the Granada European Conference on “Policies towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers” ; Report of the European Seminar “Cultural Identities of Roma, Gypsies, Travellers and Related Groups” ; Report of the Rome International Seminar between Roma and Travellers and Local and Regional Authorities: “Challenges for Cooperation and Integration” ; Concept paper prepared by Mr. Alan Phillips and INTRAC]

17h30 End of the first day session

--------------------------------------------------------

Friday, 28 November 2003

From 9h15 to 10h45

      VI. TRAVELLERS ISSUES IN EUROPE

      a) Draft recommendation on the free movement and encampment of Travellers in Europe

        [consultants’ report on the Movement of Travellers in Member States MG-S-ROM (2002) 10 rev ; draft recommendation on the free movement and encampment of Travellers in Europe MG-S-ROM (2002) 16 rev ; Russian, German and Irish comments/amendments to this draft recommendation MG-S-ROM (2003) 2 rev]

      b) Study on the social and economic rights of nomadic population

        [Outline for a study on the social and economic rights of nomadic populations MG-S-ROM (2002) 17 rev ; questionnaire on social rights of nomadic populations MG-S-ROM (2003)1 rev]

From 10h45 to 11h00 Coffee break

From 11h00 to 12h30

VI. ROMA AND HEALTH ISSUES

    [Meeting report of the International Conference on Roma Women and Access to Health Care ; Draft recommendation on Access of Roma and Travellers to Health Care MG-S-ROM (2003)4 prov]

From 12h30 to 14h00 lunch break

From 14h00 to 15h00

VII. PROBLEMS IN THE AREA OF HOUSING AND TOWN PLANNING

      [Draft recommendation on improving the housing conditions of Roma and Travellers in Europe MG-S-ROM (2002) 13 rev2 ; Comments and/or amendments by CDMG members MG-S-ROM (2003) 6 rev ]

From 15h00 to 16h00

VIII. FOLLOW-UP OF THE REPLY TO THE RECOMMENDATION 1557 (2002) OF THE PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY

    [MG-S-ROM (2003) 8 rev. 2 - Appendix 1; Reply of the Committee of Ministers to Recommendation 1557 (2002) of the Parliamentary Assembly on the legal situation of the Roma in Europe – CM/AS(2003)Rec1557 final 13 June 2003]

From 16h00 to 16h30 Coffee break

From 16h45 to 17h00

IX. FRENCH-FINNISH CONTRIBUTION REGARDING THE SETTING-UP OF A EUROPEAN FORUM FOR ROMA AND TRAVELLERS

    [GT-ROMS (2003) 6 up to 12 ; synopses of March, June, July, September and October GT-ROMS meetings ; report of the extraordinary meeting of the MG-S-ROM (2003) 13 ; Opinion of the Group MG-S-ROM (2003) extra meeting 1]

From 17h00 to 17h15

X. THEMES TO BE CHOSEN FOR THE 2004 WORK PROGRAMME

From 17h15 to 17h30

XI. ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE NEXT MEETING

      a. Date and place

      b. Organisations and experts to be invited

17h30 End of the meeting.

* * * * *

Saturday, 29 November 2003 (in the afternoon)
Field visit to French Roma and Travellers’ settlements, as well as meetings with representatives of local authorities and school institutions.

Appendix 2

List of participants

Chair/Présidente: Mr Andrzej MIRGA (Poland/Pologne)
Co-Chair/Co-président: Mr Claudio MARTA (Italy/Italie)

Bulgaria/Bulgarie
Ms. Blagorodna VESSELINOVA, State Expert, European Integration and International Relations Directorate
Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, 2 Triaditza Street, Sofia 1051
Tel.: +359 2 987 39 80, Fax: +359 2 981 53 76
E-mail: bvesselinova@mlsp.government.bg

Croatia/Croatie
Ms Milena KLAJNER, Head of the Office for National Minorities of the Government of Croatia
Mesnicka 23, 10000 Zagreb
Tel.: +385 1 45 69 358 ; Fax: +385 1 45 69 324
E-mail: milena.klajner@vlada.hr

Czech Republic / République tchèque
Mr Martin BOUČEK , Représentant Permanent Adjoint, Représentation Permanente de la République tchèque auprès du Conseil de l’Europe
53, allée de la Robertsau , 67000 Strasbourg
Tel : + 03 88 25 76 77 ; Fax : 03 88 37 33 62
E-mail : rptcheque@wanadoo.fr

Mrs Jarmila Balážová, Nad Primaskou 38, 100 00 Praha 10 apologised/excusée
Czech Republic (Česká republika)
Tel.: +420 777 655 805 ; Fax +420 257 322 987
E-mail: jarmila.balazova@seznam.cz

Finland/Finlande
Mr Henry HEDMAN apologised/excusé
Member of the Advisory Board on Romany Affairs
Sipusaarentie 78, 11120 Riihimäki
Tel : +358 19 73 32 55 ; Mobile : +358 40 516 28 36
E-mail : henry.hedman@kotus.fi

France
M. Marc GARONNE, Ministère de l'emploi et de la solidarité, Direction de l'action sociale
11 Pl. des cinq martyrs du Lycée Buffon, 75014 Paris
Tél.: +33 (0)1 40 56 87 23 ; Fax: +33 (0)1 40 56 86 01 
E-mail : marc.garonne@sante.gouv.fr
Germany/Allemagne
Mr. Roland DUBYK, Deputy Head of Section Federal Ministry of the Interior
Section SH II 7 - Minority Law Issues - PO box 170290, 53108 Bonn
Tel. : +49 (0)1888-681 3765 ; Fax : +49 (0)1888-681 5 3765
E-mail: roland.dubyk@bmi.bund.de

Greece / Grèce
Mrs Olga KLIAMAKI, Secretary of Embassy, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Direction dealing with Council of Europe

Hungary/Hongrie apologised/excusé
Mr. Bela LAKATOS, Director of the Phare Monitoring and Pedagogical Resource Centre – Ministry of Education , Bathory u.10 - 1054 Budapest
Tel. : +36 1 311 66 50/301 ext. ; Fax : +36 1 311 6650/300 ext.
E-mail : lakatos.bela@forraskozpont.hu

Ireland/Irlande :
Mrs Kirsten ROBERTS, Deputy to the Permanent Representative of Ireland to the Council of Europe, 15 avenue de la Liberté, 67000 Strasbourg
Tel.: +33 3 88 14 49 20; Fax: +33 3 88 14 49 25
E-mail: irlprcoe@noos.fr

Italy/Italie: (CO-CHAIR/CO-PRESIDENT)
Dr. Claudio MARTA, Professor of Economic Anthropology at the Istituto Universitario Orientale (Napoli), Viale Marx 239, 00137 Roma.
Tel: +39 06 86 89 10 21, Fax: +39 06 86 89 10 21
E-mail : claudio.marta@libero.it

Malta/Malte apologised/excusée

Netherlands/Pays-Bas
Mr Jos DOUMA, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, DWM/ME
Bezuidenhoutseweg 67, The Hague 2594 AC
Tel.: +31 0 70 348 6149; Fax: +31 0 70 348 6233
E-mail: jos.douma@minbuza.nl

Norway/Norvège
Mrs Tove SKOTVEDT, Adviser, Ministry of Local Government and Regioanl Development, Kommunal – Og – Regionaldepartementet – Same-og minoritetspolitisk adveling , PO Box 8112, 0032 Oslo
Tel.: +47 22 24 69 56 ; Fax: +47 22 24 95 38;
E-mail: tove.skotvedt@krd.dep.no

Poland/Pologne (CHAIR /PRESIDENT)
Dr. Andrezj MIRGA - Chairman of the Roma Advisory Council of Project of Ethnic Relations
Razvikowskiego 134, Apr 2, 31342 Cracow
Tel.: +48 12 635 90 92
E-mail: usmirga@cyf-kr.edu.pl

            apologised/excusé

Mr. GRZYMALA-KOZLOVSKI, National Minorities Division, Ministry of Interior and Administration, Department of Religions and National Minorities, Ul Batorego 50, Warsaw 02-591
Tel. : +48 (22) 60 143 52 ;60 153 69 ; Fax. : +48 22 60 115 38
E-mail: wmn.dw@mswia.gov.pl

Romania/Roumanie
Mr Gheorghe IVAN, The Office for Roma issues, The Genreral Secretariat of the Romanian Governement , Strada Smardan, nr.3, et.1, cam. 4, Sector 3, Bucarest
Tel/Fax : +40 21 31 39 455
E-mail: gheorghe.ivan@publicinfo.ro

Russian Federation/Fédération de Russie
Mr Sergey TOLKALIN, Head of Division, Department for Humanitarian Cooperation and Human Rights, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 32/34 Smolenskaya-Sennaya sq., Moscow, 119 200
Tel.: +7 095 244 30 31/244 30 25 ; Fax: +7 095 244 30 45
E-mail : dgpch@mid.ru

Slovakia/Slovaquie
Mme Anna LAMPEROVA, Ambassador, Slovak Representation to the Council of Europe, 1 rue Ehrmann, 67000 Strasbourg
Tel. : +33 3 88 36 57 17; Fax: +33 3 88 36 54 44
E-mail: MISSLOV@wanadoo.fr

Mr Jan HERO, Ul. CSA 231/7, 967 01 KREMNICA
E-mail : hero@education.gov.sk

Mrs Miriam SLOVAKOVA, Slovak Representation to the Council of Europe, 1 rue Ehrmann, 67000 Strasbourg
Tel. : +33 3 88 36 57 17; Fax: +33 3 88 36 54 44
E-mail: MISSLOV@wanadoo.fr

Slovenia/Slovénie
Mr. Samo DROBEŽ, Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Slovenia, Office for European Affairs and International Cooperation, Mackova 2, 1501 Ljubljana
Tel.: +386 (0)1 300 94 12 ; Fax: +386(0)1 300 94 34
E-mail : samo.drobez@gov.si

Spain/Espagne
Mr Emilio Pérez de Agreda, Permanent Representation of Spain to the Council of Europe, 24 allée de la Robertsau, 67000 Strasbourg
Tel.: +33 (0) 3 88 36 36 20; fax: +33 (0)3 88 36 70 63
E-mail: spain.coe@wanadoo.fr

Ukraine
Mr. Oleg SEMENENKO, Acting Head of the Council of Europe Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine 1, Mykhaylivska sqr., Kyiv, 01018
Tel : +38 044 238 17 70 or +38 044 238 18 93
E-mail : vre@mfa.gov.ua

United Kingdom
Mr Ian NAYSMITH, Senior Policy Adviser, Race Equality Unit, Home Office, Allington Towers, 19 Allington Street, London SWIE 5EB
Tel. + 44 20 7035 5411; Fax: +44 20 7035 5399
E-mail: ian.naysmith@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk

INVITED NGO’S / EXPERTS / ROMA REPRESENTATIVES
ONG / EXPERTS / REPRESENTANTS ROMS INVITES

Mrs Catherine BEARD apologised/excusée

M. May BITTEL, Les Gens du Voyage, Le Molard 15, 1290 Versoix, Switzerland
Tel./Fax :: 0041 22 755 55 34
E-mail : patrick.vogt@freesurf.ch

Mrs Mariana BUCEANU apologised/excusée

Mr John Paul COLLINS - Cultural Heritage Programme, Pavee Point, 46 North Great Charles Str., Dublin 1- Ireland
Tel : +353 1 878 02 55 – Fax : + 353 1 874 26 26
E-mail : culture@pavee.iol.ie

Mrs Carolina FERNANDEZ - International Cooperation, Fundación Secretariado General Gitano (FSGG), Antolina Merino 10, 28025 Madrid, Spain
Tel.: +34 91 422 09 60; Fax: +34 91 422 09 61
E-mail: gabinete2@fsgg.org

Mr GRYGORICHENKO, President of All-Ukrainian union of non governmental organizations “Congress of Roma of Ukraine”, 9-B Mala Gitomirska st., 01001 Kiev
Tel/fax: +380 44 228 87 11 ; E-mail: forumo@kjevweb.com.ua

Mr Konstantinos KALLIORAS, Municipal Adviser, Municipality of Sofades
Kieriou 49, Sofades 43300
Tel.: +30 244 30 223 96 ; Mobile: +30 6974 606558 ; Fax : +30 24 430 24 389
E-mail : dimsofad@otenet.gr

Mr Nikolay KIRILOV, PAKIV apologised/excusé

Mr Patrick MC DONAGH– Cultural Heritage Programme, Pavee Point, 46 North Great Charles Str., Dublin 1- Ireland
Tel : +353 1 878 02 55 – Fax : + 353 1 874 26 26
E-mail : culture@pavee.iol.ie

Mrs Alexandra RAYKOVA, Foundation for Promotion of the Roma Youth , 99 Suhodolska Str, P.B. 106, Sofia 1373, Bulgaria
Tel.: ++359 (2) 232 744. Fax: +
E-mail: alexraykova@hotmail.com

Mr Nando SIGONA, Department of Planning, Oxford Brookes University on the situation of Roma and Sinti in Italy, Oxford OX3 OBP, United Kingdom
Tel.: +44 1865 483 072 ; Fax: +44 1865 483 559
E-mail: fsigona@brookes.ac.uk

M. Dominique STEINBERGER, Association pour une Recherche pédagogique ouverte en milieu Tzigane (ARPOMT), 1 rue de l’ancienne école, F-67100 Strasbourg, France
Tel.: +33 3 88 44 44 37, Fax: +33 3 88 84 46 76
E-mail : arpomt1@aol.com

OBSERVERS/OBSERVATEURS
INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS/INSTITUTIONS

United Nations Development Program (UNDP)
Mr Andrey IVANOV, Human Development Advisor, Regional Support Centre
Europe and the CIS, Grösslingova 35, 811 09 Bratislava, Slovak Republic
E-mail: andrey.ivanov@undp.org

Presidency of the European Union / Présidence de l’Union Européenne: -

European Commission / Commission européenne apologised/excusée

OSCE/ Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights/
Contact Point for Roma and Sinti Issues : apologised/excusé

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) apologised/excusée

EUMC apologised/excusé

World bank apologised/excusée

INTERNATIONAL NGOs / ONG INTERNATIONALES

Project on Ethnic Relations apologised/excusée

European Roma Rights Center
Mr Cristi MIHALACHE, Advocacy Officer, 1386 Budapest 62, PO Box 906/93, Hungary
Tel: +36 1 413 22 35 ; Fax: +36 1 413 22 01
E-mail: cristi@errc.org
Web: http://www.errc.org.

CONSULTANTS

Mrs Efi KARATHANASSI, Agathoupoleos 3, Kipseli 112-57 Athens - Greece
Tel: +30 210 80 45 785 or +30 210 86 70 066 ; Mobile: +30 693 26 26 073
E-mail : ekarat@tee.gr

M. Laurent KELLER, 9a, rue des Balayeurs, 67000 Strasbourg apologised/excused

Mrs Petra KOVACS, OSI apologised/excusée

Mr Alan PHILLIPS, 67 Carlisle Road, HOVE, East Sussex, BN3 4FQ, United Kingdom
Tel: +44.1273.72.1358
E-mail: aphillips@gmx.net

Mrs Anna POMYKALA apologised/excusée

Mme Rachida TOUDERT-BENBEKHTI, 10 Rue Paul Reiss, 67 000 STRASBOURG
Tel. : +33 (0) 6 23 55 25 93
E-mail : rachida_toudert@hotmail.com

COUNCIL OF EUROPE BODIES / ORGANES DU CONSEIL DE L’EUROPE

Parliamentary Assembly : Committee on Migration, Refugees and Demography
/ Assemblée parlementaire : commission des migrations, des réfugiés et de la démographie:
Mrs Agnieszka NACHILO, Secretary
Tel. : +33 3 88 41 29 05 ; Fax ; +33 3 88 41 27 97
E-mail : agnieszka.nachilo@coe.int

Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe (CLRAE)/ Congrès des Pouvoirs Locaux et Régionaux d’Europe (CPLRE)
Mr Alessandro MANCINI, Social Cohesion Committee
Tel.: +33 3 88 41 22 65; Fax: +33 3 88 41 2751
E-mail: alessandro.mancini@coe.int

European Commission Against Racism and Intolerance / Commission européenne contre le racisme et l’intolérance (ECRI)
Mrs Claudia SCIOTTI, Directorate General of Human Rights - DG II
Tel: + 33 (0)3 88 41 23 49 ; Fax: + 33 (0)3 88 41 39 87
E-Mail: claudia.sciotti@coe.int
Website: http://www.ecri.coe.int/eci

Secretariat of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities / Secrétariat de la Convention-cadre pour la protection des minorités nationales
Mrs Stephanie MARSAL, Directorate General of Human Rights
Tel: +33 (0) 3 90 21 43 28 ; Fax: +33 (0) 3 90 21 49 18
E-mail: stephanie.marsal@coe.int

Secretariat of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages / Secrétariat de la Charte européenne des langues régionales ou minoritaires
Mrs Regina JENSDÖTTIR
Tel. +33 (0) 3 88 41 22 25 ; Fax : +33 (0)3 88 41 37 39
E-mail : regina.jensdottir@coe.int

Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights/Bureau du Commissaire aux droits de l’homme
Mrs Satu SUIKKARI
Tel.: +33 3 88 29 88 ; Fax : +33 3 88 41 50 53
E-mail : satu.suikkari@coe.int

Secretariat of the Committee of Ministers/Secrétariat du Comité des Ministres
Mrs Katerina HODICKA, trainee/stagiaire

Council of Europe Development Bank/ Banque de Développement du Conseil de l'Europe :
Mme Eva SCHWEBEL, Deputy Director to the Development Director, 55 avenue Kléber, 75784 Paris Cedex 16, France
Tel. : +33 (0) 1 47 55 55 92 ; Fax : +33 (0) 1 47 55 37 68 
E-mail : eva.schwebel@coebank.org

Directorate General III/ Social Cohesion/ Migration and Roma/Gypsies Department

Mr Henry SCICLUNA, Coordinator of Activities on Roma/Gypsies/Coordonnateur des activités roms/tsiganes
Tel. : +33 3 88 21 71; Fax: +33 3 88 41 27 31
E-mail: henry.scicluna@coe.int

Mrs Maria OCHOA-LLIDO, Head of Department/ Chef de service
Tel.: +33 3 88 41 21 79; Fax: +33 3 88 41 27 31
E-mail: maria.ochoa-llido@coe.int

Ms Miranda VUOLASRANTA, Special Advisor
Tel.: +33 3 90 41 48 20; Fax: +33 3 88 41 27 31
E-mail: miranda.vuolasranta@coe.int

Mr Michaël GUET, Administrator/eur, Secretary of the MG-S-ROM/Secrétaire du MG-S-ROM
Tel.: +33 3 90 41 49 63; Fax: +33 3 88 41 27 31
E-mail: michaël.guet@coe.int

Mrs Eleni TSETSEKOU, Administrator, Administratrice
Tel. : +33 3 88 41 24 33 ; Fax : +33 3 88 41 27 31
E-mail : eleni.tsetsekou@coe.int

Mrs Nelly TASNADI, Assistant/Assistante, Roma/Gypsy Activities/Activités roms/tsiganes
Tel.: +33 3 88 41 38 54; Fax: +33 3 88 41 27 31
E-mail: nelly.tasnady@coe.int

Ms Brigitte THOMAS, Assistant/Assistante, Roma/Gypsy Activities/Activités roms/tsiganes
Tel.: +33 3 88 41 21 66; Fax: +33 3 88 41 27 31
E-mail: brigitte.thomas@coe.int

Website:
English version: http://www.coe.int/T/E/Social_Cohesion/Roma_Gypsies
version française : http://www.coe.int/T/F/cohésion_sociale/Roms_Tsiganes

INTERPRETERS/INTERPRETES

Ms COSTACHE
Mme JAIN
Ms KIRILOVA
Mr OBRECHT
Mr O’LOINGSIGH
Mr RINGLER

Appendix 3

Revised specific terms of reference of the Group [MG-S-ROM (2003) 15]

Draft revised specific terms of reference
to be submitted to the Committee of Ministers for approval

Specific terms of reference of the Group of Specialists on Roma, Gypsies and Travellers

1. Name of committee:
Group of Specialists on Roma, Gypsies and Travellers (MG-S-ROM)

2. Type of committee:
Group of Specialists

3. Source of terms of reference:
European Committee on Migration (CDMG)

4. Terms of reference:
Under the authority of the CDMG, the Group of Specialists on Roma, Gypsies and Travellers (MG-S-ROM) shall:

      i. study and analyse the policies and working practices of member states concerning Roma, Gypsies and Travellers.

      ii. draw up guidelines for the development and/or implementation of policies which promote the interests of the Roma, Gypsy and Traveller population.

      iii. keep under review the situation of Roma, Gypsies and Travellers in member states in accordance with relevant recommendations adopted by the Committee of Ministers, and taking into account the reports prepared by other monitoring bodies of the Council of Europe.

5. Membership of the Committee:

      a. The Group of Specialists shall be composed as follows: Bulgaria, [Croatia], Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russian Federation, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Ukraine.

      The Council of Europe will bear the travel and subsistence expenses of one specialist from each of the above countries for attendance at meetings of the Group.

      Other member States expressing an interest in the work of the Group may designate, at their own expense, specialists to participate in meetings of the Group, with the right to vote.

      Member States wishing to have their travel and subsistence expenses covered by the Council of Europe are requested to make an official request to the CDMG for approval by the Committee of Ministers.

      b. The specialists shall be appointed as follows:

      i. Member States whose specialists have their travel and subsistence expenses covered by the Council of Europe are requested to address to the Secretariat the names of at least two candidates accompanied with their CVs. The latter will be submitted to the European Committee of on Migration (CDMG) - or its Bureau - for nomination.

      ii. Specialists of other member States participating at their own costs shall be nominated directly by their governments via the Permanent Representations in Strasbourg.

      iii. In both cases member States and the CDMG are requested to propose and/or nominate Roma, Gypsy Traveller or non-Roma, Gypsy, Traveller specialists taking into account the following profile:

        § Specialists shall have specialised knowledge of the various issues relating to Roma, Gypsies and Travellers (legal status, discrimination, health, education, employment, living conditions);
        § They shall have direct experience of the Roma, Gypsy and Traveller population and of their culture and way of life;
        § They shall have a deep knowledge of the policies on Roma, Gypsies and Travellers in his/her country and have a good knowledge of policies in other member states;
        § They shall be in close contact in his/her country with the Roma, Gypsy and Traveller population, the decision-making bodies and the NGOs working in this area;
        § The shall be able to liaise with the authorities of their countries about any decisions, documents or recommendations adopted by the Group;
        § They shall have the professional competence for promoting reforms for the improvement of the situation of Roma, Gypsies and Travellers in the various aspects of daily life.

    c. The Council of Europe will also cover the participation of 8 Romani, Gypsy and Traveller representatives and independent experts which can usefully contribute to the work of the Group.

      i. The Romani, Gypsy and Traveller representatives and independent experts are invited by the Secretariat, following approval by the President and Vice-President of the Group, on the basis of proposals received from the specialists and/or topics discussed on the agenda of the Group.

      ii. There are no reserved seats for Romani, Gypsy and Traveller representatives and independent experts from one meeting to another.

    d. The Parliamentary Assembly, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe and the Council of Europe Development Bank shall each have the right to send representatives to meetings of the Group.

      e. Where this seems desirable for purposes of co-ordination of activities, the Group may invite representatives of other Council of Europe bodies to take part in its meetings.

      f. Representatives of the following bodies will be invited to take part as observers in the meetings of the Group:

      - European Commission

        - Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights)
        - World Bank
        - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
        - United Nations Development Program
        - Relevant NGOs with consultative status to the Council of Europe

      g. The Group may decide to invite other international organisations to hearings or to participate in individual meetings as required.

      h. The Group will have as a working language for its meetings the Romani language, in addition to the official working languages of the Organisation.

6. Working structures and methods:

      a. In carrying out its work, the Specialist Group shall :


        i. seek to inform itself widely from governments, experts and NGOs;

        ii. work in close co-operation with other international bodies, especially the European Commission and the OSCE/ODIHR, and in this way seek to avoid duplication of work;

        iii. establish working relations with selected Roma, Gypsy and Traveller associations which it judges to be in a position to make a useful contribution to its work.

      b. The Group may be assisted in its work by consultants.

      c. The Group will hold two regular meetings a year, one of which should be possibly hosted by a member state. When a meeting takes place outside Strasbourg, the host country should organise on the occasion of the meeting a public hearing and a field visit.

      d. The Group of Specialists has the right to set-up ad hoc meetings with a restricted number of participants (specialists, Roma, Gypsy or Traveller representatives, consultants) between the regular meetings to progress in its work.

7. Duration:

These terms of reference shall be valid until [31 December 2005]. They shall then be reviewed.

Appendix 4

Text adopted by the Group on the draft Recommendation on Movement and Encampment of Travellers in Europe [MG-S-ROM (2003) 16]

DRAFT RECOMMENDATION OF THE COMMITTEE OF MINISTERS OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE ON THE MOVEMENT
AND ENCAMPMENT OF TRAVELLERS IN EUROPE

The Committee of Ministers, in accordance with Article 15.b of the Statute of the Council of Europe,

Considering that the aim of the Council of Europe is to achieve a greater unity between its members and that this aim can be pursued, in particular, by means of joint action to further social cohesion;

Convinced that Roma/Gypsies and Travellers contribute to European culture and values in the same way as the other peoples of Europe, and noting that, despite this contribution, they are victims of discrimination in all areas of life;

Considering that those members of the Roma/Gypsy and Traveller communities who wish to continue to lead a traditional nomadic or semi-nomadic lifestyle should have the opportunity, in law and in practice, to do so, by virtue of the freedom of movement and settlement guaranteed to all citizens of member states and the right to preserve and develop specific cultural identities;

Considering, also, that in order to allow Travellers to exercise their right to move and set up camp, a co-ordinated, coherent system of legal safeguards for their freedom of movement is necessary;

Recognising that policies for dealing with movement and encampment problems should be part of a coherent policy for improving the living conditions of Roma/Gypsies and Travellers;

Bearing in mind the 1961 European Social Charter of the Council of Europe, the 1988 Additional Protocol to it and the 1996 Revised European Social Charter;

Bearing in mind the provisions of the 1981 Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data;

Taking account of the 1995 Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities;

Bearing in mind its Recommendation (2000) 4 on the education of Roma/Gypsy children in Europe, and its Recommendation (2001) 17 on improving the economic and employment situation of Roma/Gypsies and Travellers in Europe;

Bearing in mind Recommendations 563(1969) and 1203(1993) of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly, which are concerned with the living conditions of Roma/Gypsies and Travellers in Europe, and Recommendation 1557(2002) of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on the legal situation of the Roma in Europe;

Bearing in mind Resolutions 125(1981), 16(1995) and 249(1993) and Recommendation 11(1995) of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe concerning the situation of Roma/Gypsies in Europe;

Bearing in mind General Policy Recommendation No.3 of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance on combating racism and intolerance against Roma/Gypsies;

Bearing in mind the Council Directive 2000/43/EC of 29 June 2000 on the implementation of the principle of equality of treatment between individuals without distinction of race or ethnic origin;

Considering that member states’ regulation applying to the entry and residence of non-citizens shall remain unaffected by the Guiding Principles of this Recommendation;

Bearing in mind that the constitutional structures, legal traditions, and the division of responsibilities differ in Council of Europe member states, which may lead to various ways of implementing the present Recommendation;

Recommends that, when devising, implementing and monitoring policies concerning the movement and encampment of Travellers, the governments of member states:

- take as their basis the principles appended to this Recommendation;

- bring this Recommendation to the attention of the national, regional and local authorities concerned through the appropriate channels.

APPENDIX

THE MOVEMENT AND ENCAMPMENT OF TRAVELLERS IN EUROPE

    SCOPE

1. The present text covers those Roma, Sinti, Travellers, Yenish and other related groups in member states who have a traditional nomadic or semi-nomadic life-style and who are citizens of those states or legally residing in these countries. For the sake of convenience the term “Travellers” will be used in this Recommendation.

DEFINITIONS

2. The term “Travellers” covers the populations referred to under para 1.

3. The term “encampment area” denotes any place reserved or set up especially for the encampment of Travellers; the term “site” means any site used by Travellers for their encampment; it includes encampment areas, traditional encampment sites and occasional sites.

4. The term “encampment” denotes a prolonged stay of the Travellers, their families and their “mobile homes” in an area.

5. The term “traditional encampment areas” is defined as those areas habitually used by Travellers for their encampment.

6. The term “mobile home” means any enclosed space serving as lodging for Travellers, which can be towed.

7. “Minimum facilities” include water supply, connection to the electricity network, sanitary facilities (toilets, rubbish bin).

    VI. III. GENERAL PRINCIPLES

Member states should:

8. guarantee equal rights on individual Travellers, particularly in respect of the following: ownership rights and social benefits equal to persons who are sedentary/settled, fair and proportionate land occupation charges and rent, security of residence;

9. ensure equal access for Travellers to social, cultural and economic services;
10. collect on an official internet site a variety of public services for facilitating exchanges between Travellers and administrations: revenue declarations, civil status declaration, requests for social benefits, etc.;

11. promote information and awareness campaigns for: 1) Travellers, with regard to their rights and duties and 2) the sedentary population, so that it comes to know more about the lifestyle and culture of Travellers and abandons its prejudices and stereotypes with regard to this community; the communities concerned should be actively involved in organising such information campaigns;

12. give Travellers’ mobile homes the same substantial rights as those attached to a fixed abode, particularly in social and legal matters;

13. encourage the signing of quality charters or contracts between local authorities and Travellers, on the basis of the mutual interests of the parties involved.

VII. IV. APPLICATION AND IMPLEMENTATION

A. Travellers’ freedom of movement

Member states should:

14. in the case of circulating on the national territory, refrain from requiring of national Travellers documents other than ordinary law identity papers and/or documents authorising an itinerant economic activity (hawker’s professional card) in countries in which such papers are required.

B. Establishment of Travellers’ official place of residence

Member states should:

15. ensure that the place of residence to which the Traveller is attached is indicated on ordinary law identity papers in the countries in which these are required and are necessary for access to rights;

16. allow Travellers to have their official place of residence at the address of an individual or association;

17. refrain from setting up, on the basis of the above-mentioned indications concerning official place of residence, files that make it possible to identify the person concerned as a nomad;

18. allow free choice of official place of residence for nationals when it is compulsory to establish such residence;

19. widely disseminate novel good practices as regards establishment of an official place of residence.

C. Facilities for Travellers

Member states should:

20. recognise Travellers’ right of encampment;

21. provide areas where Travellers can stop over and stay and set up camp for longer periods than usual in consultation with Travellers and according to their needs;

22. when selecting such areas, take account of Travellers’ traditional encampment sites;

23. ensure that these areas:

      i. are equipped with minimum facilities, in particular sanitation;

      ii. are sufficient in number, in the light of demographic trends among the families concerned, and their location in zones which are adequate to the frequency and circulation of Travellers;

      iii. are signposted by means of a European traffic pictogram;

24. set aside suitable areas for large gatherings and/or foreign Travellers passing through;

25. encourage a number of options with regard to encampment sites, and, in particular, that members of a group who are no longer mobile, because of their age or state of health, can stay all the year round on land where their families join them when they want to make a stop (mixed sites).

26. set up a body to monitor and assess the establishment and operation of encampment sites. The authority should be able to ensure that needs are regularly assessed and provide information as to where sites are located and what facilities they need. The authorities should ensure that Travellers are fully involved in the work of such a body;

27. provide Travellers with information on how to buy private plots of land and how they may be used.

D. Specific provision for the exercise of Travellers’ right of encampment

Member states should:

28. provide for the right of encampment in their domestic legal system in instruments that are legally binding, treating it in the same way as the right to decent housing;

29. give a superior authority the power to take over when local authorities do not fulfil their obligation to provide encampment areas;

30. except where there is an imminent serious threat to law and order (and, in that case, subject to the Traveller being rehoused on another site), make the expulsion of any Traveller subject to prior authorisation by a judge, once it has been ascertained that three conditions have been fulfilled:

      • the Traveller has set up camp illegally;
      • there are sufficient places on the encampment areas in the zone in question;
      • these sites are properly equipped and maintained;

31. establish a legislative framework for the procedures to be followed when expulsion is inevitable: consultation with the community or person concerned, reasonable notice, the provision of information, effective means of appeal, free or cheap legal aid for indigent victims;

32. prohibit forced collective expulsion and impose strict rules governing situations in which expulsion may take place;

33. set a time limit to the length of stay on sites so as to prevent their being transformed into a zone of exclusion as a result of their users becoming sedentary on the spot; allow the rotation of Travellers between the sites while offering those who wish to become sedentary alternatives to settling on existing sites; refrain from setting a maximum authorised length of stay that is shorter than the longest school period between two school holiday periods;

34. authorise Travellers’ associations to assert the rights of individual Travellers before the competent courts in the event of expulsion, as defendant, or plaintiff and at all stages of the procedure;

35. make statutory provisions for appeal against decisions banning access to certain sites or prohibiting encampment;

36. define as part of a Traveller’s caravan, and therefore of his or her place of residence, an area bound by a perimeter of a few metres around the caravan.


1 This Conference is scheduled during the second half of September, at the European Youth Centre, either in Strasbourg or Budapest.

2 The OSCE Action Plan was adopted on 27 November 2003.

3 In the meantime, the Committee of Ministers asked the MG-S-ROM to give its opinion on this issue. This will be a topic on the agenda of the next MG-S-ROM meeting.

4 At its meeting in Rotterdam in December 2003, the CDMG agreed that Croatia be granted full membership to the MG-S-ROM. A final decision from the Committee of Ministers is expected in March 2004.

5 At its Rotterdam meeting in December 2003 the CDMG approved the revised terms of reference o the MG-S-ROM.

6 It is now envisaged to have two separate meetings : one seminar on monitoring and evaluation (in May 2004) and a separate ad hoc meeting to discuss new provisions concerning monitoring and evaluation to be included in the draft recommendation on policies towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers.

7 The CDMG did not have time during its November meeting to adopt the draft Recommendation on the movement and encampment of Travellers in Europe. A statistical commented analysis of the replies was prepared by the consultants. It will be finalised and translated in February 2004.

8 See front page of this report for an update of replies received by the Secretariat. 

9 The Chair has proposed new dates in the meantime : 29-30 March.