Existing predominantly on the margins of society, Roma are among the most deprived communities in Europe. They are also one of Europe's oldest and largest ethnic minorities, with an estimated 10 to 12 million Romani people living within the countries of the Council of Europe.
The Roma suffer massive discrimination and are denied their rights to housing, employment, health care and education. Roma communities are often subject to forced evictions, racist attacks and police ill-treatment.
Briefing: Human rights on the margins: Roma in Europe (2010)
Claudia lives by a rubbish dump on the outskirts of Cluj-Napoca, the second-largest city in Romania.
Along with 355 members of her community, Claudia was evicted from her previous settlement in the city centre by Cluj authorities. In the slideshow above, she describes the eviction.
Evicted into metal containersAmnesty and other human rights organisations have been lobbying the Serbian Government not to forcibly evict thirty three Roma families in Block 72 Belgrade since Autumn 2011. Unfortunately, Belgrade city authorities evicted 10 of the thirty three families at Block 72 in March 2012; our local sources believe that the rest of the families will move out of the site of their own accord.
We are very concerned about the way in which this eviction has been conducted, especially as some parties involved believe that because there was a 'consultation', the eviction was carried out according to international standards. Amnesty will be evaluating the process of the Block 72 eviction with our partners in Serbia, and writing to the Serbian Ministry of Human Rights to outline a long list of concerns.
Thank you to all who emailed the Serbian authorities for this campaign.
Segregation for Roma children is widespread in schools. However, a landmark ruling in January 2012 saw Slovakian courts penalised an elementary school for its segregation practices.
Briefing: Right to education without discrimination (2011)
"There is no place to go"
Violence against Roma communities is endemic in Italy. In December 2011, a settlement in Turin was set on fire in a racist attack. More information and Amnesty's response
Report: Forced evictions and discrimination against Roma in Milan (2011)
Blog: There's no place for Roma in Milan (2011)
The last few years have seen a disturbing trend in vigilante-style attacks on Roma communities in Hungary, following widespread discrimination of Roma in the media and segregation in Hungarian society.
Report: Violent attacks against Roma in Hungary (2010)