“We bring human rights to those living in total isolation, communities needing all the opportunities for just law enforcement that they can get,” says the HCLU’s web page. There are currently 15 working TASZPOINTs in Hungary, and our series of interviews will show how they work. Here, we discuss the TASZPOINT in Tomor, with Laci Siroki, the director.
A man from Borsodbóta had some logs valued at 3,200 forints in his wheelbarrow, when the police surrounded him, handcuffed him, and took him, along with his 17 and 19 year old sons, to jail. They kept them in jail for three days. Without taking into consideration that the 17 year old son was a minor, they interrogated him, didn’t give him proper representation, and made him sign papers without him knowing their content.
The 2/3 majority Hungarian Parliament, with a resolution published on June 7, set up an ad hoc parliamentary committee to investigate the events in Gyöngyöspata. Despite the fact that based on the title and preamble of the resolution, the task of the committee is to investigate the background of criminal activity by uniformed personnel and to assist in eliminating it, out of the nine tasks listed by the resolution five (!) are concerned with the evacuation of the Roma by the Red Cross and the role of Richard Field. The resolution – recalling the documents of the staged trials of the 1950s – is prejudiced when, among others, it states: “establishing who and why claimed untruthfully with regard to the long-existing activities of the Red Cross that the evacuation of the Romas from the scene was taking place, what was the reason and objective for this causing of panic”.
On the 15th of February 2011, a group of European and Hungarian Romani and non-Romani organisations sent a letter to the Hungarian government, currently holding the EU presidency, and the European Commission, appealing for open consultation with NGOs on EU Roma policy related initiatives.
Orosz Béla was fined 50 thousand forints for a minor offence. In a letter sent on August 8th, he informed the police that because of his poverty, he cannot pay the fine, but would like to work off his debts through community service. He did not receive a response from the police. Two months later, the courts informed him that they will hold a hearing regarding the conversion of his fine into a prison sentence. This procedure is illegal; the judicial authorities disregarded the laws relating to offences.