14 April, 2016

Newsletter N° 46, April 2016

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Category: Campaign Newsletter
2 pm

Version francaise

Credit: Stuart Richardson

Dear Subscriber,

The International Roma Day on 8 April is a day to celebrate diversity and especially Romani culture. But it’s also a moment to reflect on the hate speech targeting Roma, refugees and other minorities and the treats it poses to the values of inter-cultural and inter-faith dialogue, solidarity and human dignity for everybody in Europe.

How to Take Action on Hate Speech

The General Policy recommendation nr 15 on hate speech issued by the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) on 21 March provides clear suggestion to the Council of Europe Member States on how to tackle hate speech. The document provides guidelines to understand what constitutes hate speech, incitement and freedom of expression. The policy recommendation includes encouraging speedy reactions by public figures to hate speech, withdraw of support to political parties that actively use hate speech, self-regulation of media and awareness raising on dangerous consequences of hate speech. In support of the recommendation, ECRI also published a report on ‘Cyberhate’; a fact sheet on Hate Speech by the European Court of Human Rights is also available.
These concrete policy measures should be advocated for at national level by the campaign community, for example in support of the 8 April.

Credit: No hate fighters

Latest News

Mirrors Available in French

Mirrors The first human rights education manual for young people on combating antigypsyism – racism and discrimination against Roma is now available in French and English. Designed to empower 16 to 30 year old young people to tackle individual and institutional racism against Roma, the manual provides educators, teachers, trainers and youth organisations with comprehensive educational activities for groups of all types; those with or without Roma participants, as well as mixed groups. All publications developed under the Roma Youth Action Plan can be found on its website.

Human Rights approach to terrorism

Recent terror attacks in Ankara, Brussels and Istanbul have left us with many emotions and questions, as to how to understand and respond to these events. As Thorbjørn, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, underlines such attacks challenge our European Human Rights values. It is important to express solidarity and support for the victims and strengthen the call for democracy and human rights for all. The Council of Europe’s response is explained by the Secretary General in an interview with BBC News on 24 March.

Combating Hate Speech in Bosnia-Herzegovina

This special report explores the prevalence of hate speech in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The organisation Balkan Diskurs has pulled together a collection of articles from its team of youth correspondents, providing valuable insights into the fight against online and offline hate speech across the country. The project was supported by the European Youth Foundation.

No Hate Parliamentary Alliance meets in Italy

The first national seminar of the No Hate Parliamentary Alliance was held on 4 April at the Italian Parliament in Rome, Italy. The event took stock of the situation of hate speech in Italy and discussed possible policies to counter it. The ECRI General Policy recommendation on hate speech and several practices from the Italian anti-discrimination agency and academic institutions were presented. The seminar was attended by the Chairperson of the Italian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly, Mr Michele Nicoletti, the Chairperson of the Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination, Ms Elena Centemero, and the General Rapporteur on combating racism and intolerance and Coordinator of the No Hate Alliance, Ms Milena Santerini. For more information see the No Hate Alliance website.

National Campaigns

Challenging Antigypsyism through grassroots activism seminar

A seminar on Antigypsyism will be organized during 18-24 April in Banska Bystrica, Slovakia by Phiren Amenca international network and partner organizations. The seminar aims to raise awareness among young people and support activism efforts in challenging antigypsyism by creating local, national and European campaigns. The seminar is one of the key events in the networks goals for creating opportunities for non-formal education, dialogue and engagement to challenge stereotypes, racism and antigypsyism.

Hate Speech Watch Seminar

From 29 March to 2 April Hope for Children Hungary organised the seminar with partners from the national campaign committees of Albania, Armenia, UK, Italy, Georgia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Joined by participants from Romania, Russian Federation, Belarus and Spain, the thirty activists of the Movement aim to strengthen the use and visibility of the Hate Speech Watch at European and national level. The seminar report and recommendations will be available end of April.

Fighting Hate in Serbia

Hate Fighters Network organised a training course for young people from Belgium, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Greece, Italy, Serbia, and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, in Nis, Serbia from 13 to 20 March 2016. Participants learned the basics of combating hate speech and how to use creative methods for this purpose. The course was organised through Hate Fighters Work Plan 2016 supported by European Youth Foundation.

Refugee Crisis Exposes the Lack of Clarity on what is Hate Speech

The Slovenian National Youth Council participated in an extraordinary meeting organised by the National Assembly’s Committee on internal affairs, public administration and local self-government. The Committee aimed to discuss the hate speech increase in Slovenia due to the refugee crisis. In the meeting it was highlighted that the lack of clarity and the absence of legal practice in the ​​prosecution of hate speech has left the field open to argue for tolerating hate speech on the grounds of freedom of speech. This situation blocks action being taken towards hate speech targeting refugees as part of the public debate on the closing of borders for refugees. For more read the press release.

Manual Human Rights in the Internet

“Human rights in the Internet. Manual for educators and youth workers”, has been prepared in Ukrainian for the participants of the “Training Course on Preparation of the Network of Multipliers in the Field of Human Rights in the Internet”. The manual was developed by Olexeii Murashkevich and Olena Chernyh, Ukrainian activists of the NHSM campaign, with support of the EU/CoE Joint Programme “Strengthening information society in Ukraine”. It contains user-friendly information about human rights, and 5 interactive activities for group work.

Conference: ‘From Hate Speech to Tolerance and Understanding’

Organised on 19 March by the British Council Greece and the University of Piraeus under the auspices of the Ministry of Education, Research and Religious Affairs the conference brought together 300 representatives from civil society and academia. The Council of Europe’s standards on hate speech and some of the jurisprudence of the Court regarding the articulation between hate speech and freedom of speech were presented. Online activist Iana Minoshkina, ran a workshop on how to respond to hate speech online.

Campaign Partners

Roma Youth Advocacy Training

Mirrors The training is organised to enable young Roma to get acquainted with European Union representatives of various departments, including European networks and organisations. The event is held from March 31 to April 7, gather 30 young Roma from across Europe to Brussels, and is organised by TernYpe, Phiren Amenca, ERGO, and Foyer vzw.


The European Network Against Racism (ENAR) published its first report on Afrophobia in Europe. Together with the shadow report on racism, ENAR also launched on its YouTube channel a series of eight short video stories and interviews on racism in Europe today under the title Recycling Hatred, including Recycling Hatred #2: Is there evidence of apartheid practices in Europe?

Upcoming Events

Seminar on Hate Crimes on 22 July

Youth network ‘Amma’s Youth for Unity, Diversity and Humanity’ (AYUDH) opened the call for applications for its 12th European Youth Summit, gathering 250 youth from 25 countries from 17 to 25 July in Germany. This year hate speech and hate crime will be specifically addressed with the ‘One Humanity’, high-level symposium to raise public awareness about the origins and effects of hate crimes and hate speech on 22 July. The event is supported by the European Youth Foundation.

Roma Week

A series of events will be organized under the so-called Roma Week in the European Parliament on the occasion of the 8 April International Roma Day. This year, the day marks the 45th anniversary of the First Romani World Congress organized near London where Roma representatives have adopted the Roma flag and Roma anthem.

Blog Posts

Council of Europe work on Roma and Travellers

In March the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted the Thematic Action Plan on the Inclusion of Roma and Travellers. Meanwhile the Joint Council on Youth of the Youth Department agreed on the strategic orientations and approaches of the next Roma Youth Action Plan. Read more on the commitment to the participation and inclusion of Roma young people in the blog post.

Campaign newsletters online

Previous campaign newsletters can be consulted online in English and French. If you would like to submit articles for the newsletter, email the Campaign Secretariat.

Word of the moment


Roma are an ethnic group with a long history in Europe.

“The Gypsy problem is a litmus test not of democracy but of a civil society.”

Vaclav Havel

Former president of the Czech Republic
10 December 1993, New York times

Social Flow

Racist crime in Europe: increasing, under-reported, destroying lives.

Posted by ENARtube on 8 May 2016.

There is greater need for the No Hate Speech Movement than ever before.


No Hate Speech on 29 march 2016.

We all know that offline and online come together. Even though it is not necessary hate speech and rather collateral damage of the ongoing conflict, I consider it as an important matter to be aware of and to express solidarity
Many Roma families left Slavyansk for Kharkiv region in April 2014, just after the anti-Roma pogroms sanctioned by “people’s Mayor” Ponomaryov. After coming back, Roma found their houses plundered and unfit for habitation – marauders stole gas stoves, even pillows, blankets and dishes. In the picture: in this house several families live, including nine children, who lost their own housing.
If you want to express your solidarity with the Roma of Donbass and support the campaign, follow the link (click “support”).

Jana Minochkina on 30 march 2016.

#nohatespeech VIP #myliuPanda just confirmed participation @EP_YouthEvent @Youth_Forum #YOFest 2016! You also join?

No Hate Speech (@NoHateSpeech) on 19 March 2016.

No Hate Blog on 10 March 2016.

2012-2016. Directorate of Democratic Citizenship and Participation, Council of Europe.
Project Young People Combating Hate Speech Online Youth Department.

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