The Advisory Committee on the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities has urged the Romanian authorities to step up their efforts to combat discrimination, against the Roma in particular, and to improve the protection of national minorities in a number of areas.
In a new Opinion assessing the progress made since 2011 published today, the committee acknowledges the authorities´ efforts to promote minority cultures and education, as well as to ensure that national minorities are represented in parliament. However it also highlights a number of issues where immediate action is needed.
Romania should create a consolidated and coherent legal framework for the protection of minority rights, since the current legislation in force regulates different aspects, but is disjointed, full of grey zones and open to contradictory interpretation. The draft law on the status of national minorities, proposed in parliament more than ten years ago, has not yet been adopted.
Prejudice against the Roma remains a matter of considerable concern. Despite the resolute stance of the National Council for Combating Discrimination, the court rulings and statements from the authorities, racist incidents continue to be reported. Intolerant language which used to be restricted to extreme right political parties has entered the mainstream political discourse, in particular at local level.