Moldova: time has come to strengthen protection of the rights of
people with disabilities, Roma and other vulnerable groups
Chisinau, 21/10/11 –
“A prompt adoption of a comprehensive anti-discrimination legislation
will be an important step towards a more effective protection of the
rights of the vulnerable groups in Moldova”, said the Council of Europe
Commissioner for Human Rights at the end of a three-day visit to
Moldova. “It should be accompanied by an education and public awareness
campaign to ensure efficient implementation of the legislation in
During the visit, the Commissioner focused on non-discrimination and
promotion of tolerance in society, as well as human rights issues
related to the events of April 2009. He welcomed a strong commitment by
the relevant governmental institutions to promulgate the
anti-discrimination law, despite strong opposition by certain groups.
The Commissioner expressed concern about homophobic and Islamophobic
rhetoric used by some politicians and other leaders in the course of
discussions around this important law. “Such stigmatising rhetoric
should not lead to delays in the approval of this law by the
parliament”, the Commissioner noted.
Furthermore, the Commissioner addressed the situation of the Roma
community in the country. “Further measures should be taken to promote
the social integration of the Roma, including access to employment”, he
stated after visiting one of the Roma settlements. “Special attention
should be paid to guaranteeing their access to water and medical
facilities, as well as integration of Roma children at schools”.
The Commissioner also took stock of the measures taken in connection
with the events of April 2009 and recommendations contained in his
previous report on Moldova, particularly those related to combating
ill-treatment and impunity by the police. He noted the steps undertaken
by the government in this direction, such as the establishment of the
special anti-torture units within the Prosecutor General’s Office.
At the same time, he underlined that more resolute action is needed in
order to investigate and bring to justice all those responsible for the
serious violations of human rights perpetrated in the period of the
April 2009 protests. He shared the opinion expressed by several of his
interlocutors, including those in the government, that the process of
ensuring accountability has been too slow and the results reached so far
cannot be considered as satisfactory.
Finally, the Commissioner took note of the government’s intention to
initiate a comprehensive reform of the justice system, which is widely
regarded as an important step towards strengthening the rule of law and
respect for human rights in the country.
Press contact in the Commissioner’s Office:
Stefano Montanari, +33 (0)6 61 14 70 37;
Keep up to date with the Commissioner on