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08/04/2002 04:15 PM ID: 24083 Permalink   

Roma Seek Refuge from Czech Rep. Despite Coming EU Membership


Despite impending membership in the EU, Roma from the Czech Republic continue to seek and receive asylum in other European countries. 42 Czech received asylum in European countries in 2001. Only Romania was higher among post-Soviet states.

According to the UNHCR 2,346 Czechs applied for asylum in other European countries. The majority of the 42 granted asylum were Roma.

Critics maintain that the numbers of asylum-seekers indicates that discrimination and racism are still present in Czech society. Canada has imposed visa restrictions on Czechs to stop the flow of immigrants, and Britain has threatened to do so.

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