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European Parliament needs Rom8k8 slot casino onlinea lawmakers say critics

广东高考分数线 | 8k8 slot casino online | Updated: 2024-07-20 23:23:01

European Parliament building is pictured in Strasbourg, France, July 16, 2024. [Photo/Agencies]

The 720 newly-elected members of the European Parliament gathered in Strasbourg, France on Tuesday for the inaugural session of the 10th legislature, largely reflecting last month's election results but lacking Roma ethnic group representation, while far-right parties have increased their influence.

The significant increase in the number of far-right members of the European Parliament, which now comprise more than a quarter of the chamber, threatens to heighten polarization and potentially impede the European Union's long-term goals, despite pro-European centrist parties maintaining a governing majority, reported Euronews.

Roma rights organizations have decried the absence of any Roma-identifying politicians among the elected members of Parliament as a heavy blow to Europe's largest ethnic minority, reported The Guardian newspaper.

Despite the Roma population's previous representation in the European Parliament peaking at four MEPs in the outgoing assembly, the estimated 6 million Roma people across the EU now lack direct representation, while populist right-wing parties, particularly from France, Germany, Italy, and Austria, have gained significant weight in shaping the EU's future.

Ismael Cortes, an associate professor at the UNESCO Institute of Philosophy for Peace, said: "We're facing an unprecedented situation. Out of 720 seats in the European Parliament, zero are going to be dedicated to Roma people. The European minority that has been scapegoated the most and continues to be scapegoated is left without representation."

Cortes warned that this lack of representation could be "dangerous" for Roma communities, given the crucial role Roma MEPs have historically played in countering anti-Roma stereotypes and hate speech in the Parliament.

He said: "Now, Roma people become the target of hate speech but with no parliamentary reply."

The absence of Roma MEPs may hinder progress on addressing persistent issues faced by Roma communities, including housing access and school segregation, Cortes warned.

"Without a voice in Parliament, these issues fall off the agenda. Doors are closing instead of opening," he said.

Roma rights groups attribute the lack of Roma MEPs to political parties' strategies. Gabriela Hrabanova, executive director of the European Roma Grassroots Organizations Network, explained that parties, fearing potential losses, largely excluded Roma candidates from top positions on their electoral lists during the recent EU elections.

"The diversity of Europe, it's not being reflected at all," said Hrabanova."In some places in Europe, Roma are as much as 10 percent of the population. And if we don't have even a single representative, there's something really wrong."

In one of the Parliament's first actions on Tuesday, Roberta Metsola of Malta was reelected as European Parliament president, an anticipated outcome given her backing by the dominant center-right European People's Party.

"With humility and honor I accept this position," she said, in a speech."Together, we are stronger, we are better."

On Thursday, MEPs will vote on whether to reelect Ursula von der Leyen as president of the European Commission for a second term.

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