2 August 2020
Survivor of the Srebrencia Genocide, founder of “Srebrenica – City of Hope”
Statement on the occasion of the European Holocaust Memorial Day for Sinti and Roma 2020
For many years I was involved with ternYpe in the organization of the youth remembrance event “Dik he na Bister” and of the “Rromani Resistance Day” as well. Today we remember the Roma and Sinti victims during WWII and the liquidation of the “Zigeunerlager” in Auschwitz-Birkenau. Remembrance is often empty if not followed by actions. We said many times “remember” and “never again” after WWII, but the same brutalities happened again in different parts of the world like Rwanda, Srebrenica and many others. I was personally touched by the Srebrenica Genocide in July 1995 when I lost many of my relatives including my father and I spent my whole childhood in war time.
We live in a Europe faced with economic crises, and exactly like before WWII, there is a rise of nationalism and hate speech against minorities and vulnerable groups.
We live in a world faced with the “migrant crisis” and a human crisis of values, as we forgot what means to act in solidarity.
We live in a world faced with “climate change” where our lifestyle and the human race are killing entire ecosystems.
There is an individual level in all of this, in which each of us is guilty and each of us is a change-maker.
We study the history but we often forget, that in each moment of our life we are writing the history. If we really want to pay tribute to the victims of WWII we have to keep in mind that this is our time, this is our planet and we have the power in our hands to build a better world for our children.
Chairman of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma
Vice President of the European Parliament
European Commissioner for Equality
Vice President of the German Bundestag
Dutch State Secretary Paul Blokhuis
Amb. Chris J. Lazaris, IHRA Chairman
UN Special Rapporteur UN minorities
President of the Synod of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD)
Prime Minister of Canada
Chairman of the Association of Roma in Poland
Deputy Chairman of the Documentation and Cultural Center of German Sinti and Roma and Chairman of the Association of German Sinti and Roma
European Roma Institute for Arts and Culture (ERIAC)
Civil Rights Activist
Chairman of the Council of German Sinti and Roma in Hesse
Manon Aubry, MEP
Historian at the University of Bucharest
German former Weinkönigin
Chairman of the Association of Jews,
Survivors and Victims of the Second World War
First Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Culture and National Heritage of Poland