Introduction to Summary of Report:
The following text is an overview of Voice of Roma's recent publication, "The Current Plight of the Kosovo Roma". This groundbreaking report describes the impact of the 1999 NATO intervention and what has happened in the aftermath on the Romani communities in Kosovo. The report shows that 75% of the Roma who lived in Kosovo prior to the bombing have been driven from Kosovo by Albanian extremists. The report also highlights how Romani homes have been burned and destroyed, or occupied by force by others in the aftermath of the bombing campaign. The situation faced by the Roma of Kosovo has tragic implications for the future welfare and viability of their communities.
The data for this report was gathered by Paul Polansky, who returned to Kosovo in the summer of 2001 to survey the Romani communities and update his 1999 research. He traveled throughout Kosovo visiting almost 300 villages, in some cases under dangerous circumstances, to acquire firsthand information on the conditions under which the Roma were living, as well as statistical information relating to how many Roma remained in the villages, how many left, how many homes were destroyed, etc. While in Kosovo he documented numerous abuses against the Roma, from isolated attacks of violence to the institutionalized racism that confronts them daily at the hands of the Albanians in power, the Serbs and the international aid community. "The Current Plight of the Kosovo Roma" illustrates how the Roma are coping following the war, and outlines specific policy proposals that if implemented would substantially help to ameliorate their situation and create a more stable and secure Kosovo for all its people.
(This is followed by a 14 page "Overview" of the Report)