Friday, July 30, 2010



EduMin promises money for Romani Holocaust info centre

30 July 2010

Hodonin u Kunstatu, South Moravia, July 29 (CTK) - The Czech state should find money for the construction of a Romany Holocaust Information and Education Centre on the spot of a former internment camp for Romanies in Hodonin u Kunstatu, Education Minister Josef Dobes told journalists yesterday.

"It may be good to send a moral signal during a crisis," Dobes said.

He admitted that he temporarily stopped all investment and is seeking how to save money. But the Romany Holocaust Centre may be an exception.

The previous Czech government earmarked 90 million crowns for the centre. The Education Ministry bought the area of the former camp, now used as a recreation facility, for 20 million crowns last year.

Dobes plans to present the budget for the centre's construction to the government in October.

Michal Kocab, government human rights commissioner, said this would be the first centre focusing on Romany Holocaust in the world.

Some 1300 Romanies went through the Hodonin internment camp operating from August 1942 to December 1943. Over 200 died there and the rest of the inmates were moved to the Oswiecim (Auschwitz) extermination camp where most of them perished. In total, about 580 of 6000 Czech Romanies returned from Nazi camps after World War Two.

Lucie Matejkova, from Brno-based Roma Culture Museum, said the centre should be open both to the general public and researchers.

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