Commemorating 80 Years of the Sinti and Roma Holocaust. Lessons Learned to Ensure Non-Repetition

Date and Time: April 10, 2024, 10:00 – 12:00
Location: European Parliament, Brussels. Altiero Spinelli (ASP), Room 5G2.

Streaming link: HERE


In collaboration with MEP Patricia Maya Caro, The Left in the European Parliament, and ERGO Network, the European Roma Institute for Arts and Culture (ERIAC) is organizing a High-Level Conference during Roma Week (April 9-11, 2024). This event aims to bring together policy-makers, experts, and advocates to mark the 80th anniversary of the Sinti and Roma Holocaust.


As we approach August 2024, we solemnly commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Sinti and Roma Holocaust, a chapter of history often overlooked despite increasing awareness. In 2015, the European Parliament took a significant step by recognizing the genocide of Sinti and Roma during the Second World War and designating August 2nd as an annual day of remembrance. This recognition was pivotal in the fight against antigypsyism and the commemoration of Roma history in Europe.


On August 2, 1944, the last remaining 4,300 Sinti and Roma imprisoned in the Zigeunerfamilienlager (“Gypsy Family Camp”) of Auschwitz II-Birkenau were brutally murdered by the Nazis and their collaborators. However, the persecution and exclusion of Roma and Sinti did not begin or end with Nazism. Despite commitments to combat antigypsyism, studies reveal pervasive discrimination and hatred against Roma populations across Europe, rooted in historical ideologies of intolerance.


The event “80 Years of the Sinti and Roma Holocaust: Lessons Learned to Ensure Non-Repetition” serves as a platform to commemorate victims, honor survivors, and reflect on the historical significance of the Roma Holocaust while addressing contemporary challenges. By drawing links between past injustices and current discrimination, the conference aims to promote inclusion and combat the rise of intolerance within European societies.



  • 10:00 – 10:10: Opening
    Ms. Gabriela Hrabanova, Director of ERGO Network.
  • 10:10 – 10:30: Keynote Speaker
    Christian Pfeil, contemporary witness and Holocaust survivor (Central Council of German Sinti and Roma)
  • 10:30 – 11:15: High-Level Panel Discussion
    Moderator: Mr. Iulius Rostas, Visiting Professor, National University of Political Studies and Public Administration, Bucharest

    • Ms. Soraya Post, former MEP Socialists & Democrats.
    • Mr. Cristi Mihalache, Chief of the Contact Point on Roma and Sinti Issues, OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights.
    • Mr. Claude Cahn, Human Rights Officer, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
    • Mr. Szabolcs Schmidt, Head of Unit for Non-discrimination and Roma Coordination, European Commission.
  • 11:15 – 12:00: Closing Remarks
    • Mrs. Patricia Caro Maya, Member of the European Parliament (THE LEFT).
    • Mr. Zeljko Jovanovic, Director of the Roma Foundation for Europe and President of the European Roma Institute for Arts and Culture (ERIAC).
    • Ms. Eleni Tsetsekou, Secretary of ADI-ROM, Directorate of Anti-Discrimination, Roma and Travellers Team, Council of Europe.
    • Ms. Věra Jourová, Vice-President for Values and Transparency of the European Commission.

This High-Level Conference reaffirms the commitment of the European Parliament and the European Commission to promoting human rights, combating discrimination, and fostering the inclusion of all Europeans. Join us in honoring the memory of the victims and advocating for a more tolerant and inclusive Europe.


Agenda – 80 Years of the Roma Holocaust. Lessons learnt to ensure non-repetition