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From our correspondent in Berlin

Berlin bought its peace. 110 Romanian Gypsies will receive 27,000 euros to return to Romania

de Dani Rockhoff, transl/adapt. C.B.     HotNews.ro
Luni, 15 iunie 2009, 21:00 English | Top News

Nomazi si fara sanse in Europa
Foto: Dani Rockhoff
Berlin's central town hall is resorting to public money to get rid of the Romanian beggars and windscreen cleaners. Romanian Gypsies will receive 250 euros for each adult and 150 euros for each child, so that the ethnic minority will return to Romania. They invaded a park, then a church in Berlin, asking both for the right and the place to stay. They have been the main focus in the "immigration press" for the last month.

Some German politicians are sceptical about the solution. The German press says the Gypsy group left Berlin on Thursday, heading for Bavaria. Romanian Consul in Berlin Remus Marasescu contacted the group of nomads twice last week.

The Gypsies were on their way to Hof and Nürnberg, leaving Germany. "I believe the people understood they had to respect the contract they had signed." On receiving the money from the Berlin central town hall, the nomads had to sign a contract that bound them to use the money for travelling back to their country of origin. A large part of the Gypsies apparently come from Rosiorii de Vede, Teleorman (South Romania).

Berlin Kuriei says that some of the nomads came to Berlin in cars with British numbers. Others spoke Spanish. They asked for a place to stay. During mid-May, 60 of them camped in Görlitz park, then they illegally made their headquarters in a kindergarten from Bethanien cultural house in Berlin.

When they saw the buses authorities sent to transport them in a hall from Spandau on May 28, the group of Gypsies, now counting 100, ran away with their children and sought shelter in a church from Wrangelstrasse. The priest serving St.-Marien-Liebfrauen-Kirche said the church was taken by surprised by this group of people who barged in and said they wanted to stay.

The senator for refugee problems Heidi Knake-Werner suggested that they be lodged in a refugee shelter in Motardstrasse (Siemensstadt), where they were to receive food and health services. The solution was initially refused, being considered an "expulsion camp".

As Romanian citizens, the Gypsy minority from Romania enjoy the right to travel freely within the EU. The German Senator for Inner Affirs Ehrhart Körting (SPD) considers that "despite the fact that they came to Germany as tourists, hey are not on holiday, they are not looking for employment opportunities".

Eventually, the Gypsies accepted to be lodged in the Motardstrasse hall, where the complaints kept pouring. The solution was either the 250 euros money for travel or buying a one-way bus ticket to Romania. A spokesperson representing the authorities in Berlin says that if they do not honour the contract and do not return home, they will have to give back the money.

The German Senator for social issues Knake-Werner announced that Berlin authorities were going to create an office for Gypsy counselling regarding their rights, like the one in Frankfurt".




















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