Strasbourg, 5 July 2016: The European Roma and Travellers Forum (ERTF) welcomes the decision of the Stockholm District Court of 10 June, 2016 condemning the Swedish state for ethnic discrimination in constituting a police register of Swedish Roma citizens.
The Police Administration in Southern Sweden kept a register of 4700 Roma individuals who had no connection whatsoever with any criminal activity. The case against the State was brought by 8 adults and 3 children, assisted by Civil Rights Defenders, a non-governmental organization.
This judgment of the Swedish Court is a landmark in the struggle against the discrimination of the Roma on the basis of their ethnicity. It is an eye-opener to all European countries where dubious police practices are frequent and directed at the Roma community: unjustified identity controls, unwarranted arrests and requisitions and other forms of harassment.