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Fourth report on Croatia [en] - [fr]- [hrv]

Press Release – 25.09.2012

Croatian version

Council of Europe’s Anti-Racism Commission publishes new report on Croatia

Strasbourg, 25.09.2012 - The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) today published its fourth report on Croatia. ECRI’s Chair, Mr Jen÷ Kaltenbach, said that, despite positive developments, there were issues of concern, such as the impact on inter-ethnic relations of the under-representation of persons belonging to national minorities in the public administration and the courts, and in particular the low number of Serbs in the police at local level, and the fact that many Roma still do not have personal identity or citizenship documents.

Since ECRI’s previous report, the new Criminal Code defines hate crime and hate motivation can be an aggravating circumstance in the determination of the penalty. The Anti-Discrimination Act of 2008 designates the Ombudsman as the central body for the suppression of discrimination. Significant resources have been invested in addressing inequalities faced by Roma; pre-school facilities are now available to all Roma children and measures are being taken to put an end to separate Roma-only classes.

However, the drop-out rate among Roma pupils is still high. Integration is a problem for refugees; language classes are provided only at two licensed centres and access to employment and housing is difficult. Failings in the care of unaccompanied migrant minors include lack of appropriate medical screening, age-assessment testing, recording and tracing.

In its report, ECRI has made a number of recommendations to the authorities, among which the following three require priority implementation and will be revisited by ECRI in two years’ time:

The report, including Government observations, is available here. It was prepared following ECRI’s contact visit to Croatia in November 2011 and takes account of developments up to 22 March 2012.

ECRI is a human rights body of the Council of Europe, composed of independent experts, which monitors problems of racism, discrimination on grounds of ethnic origin, colour, citizenship, religion and language (racial discrimination), as well as xenophobia, antisemitism and intolerance, prepares reports and issues recommendations to member States.

For more information on ECRI: www.coe.int/ecri

Press contact: Stefano Valenti, Tel: +33 (0)3 90 21 43 28, stefano.valenti@coe.int