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Open letter from women and mothers against racism from the tribune of the National Assembly

April 30
13:23 2015
TO MR. ROSEN PLEVNELIEV
PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA
TO MRS. TSETSKA TSACHEVA
CHAIRMAN OF THE 43 – TH NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
TO MR. BOYKO BORISOV
PRIME MINISTER OF THE REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA
TO MR. TSVETAN TSVETANOV
CHAIRMAN OF THE PARLIAMENT GROUP OF POLITICAL PARTY “GERB”
TO MR. NAIDEN ZELENOGORSKI AND MR. RADAN KANEV,
CO-CHAIRMEN OF PARLIAMENT GROUP “REFORMATORSKI BLOK”
TO MR. BORISLAV BORISOV
CHAIRMAN OF THE PARLIAMENT GROUP OF POLITICAL PARTY “ABV”
COPY TO:
MR. MARTIN SCHULZ
CHAIRMAN OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT
MR. JEAN-CLAUDE JUNCKER
CHAIRMAN OF THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE 
MR. DONALD TUSK
CHAIRMAN OF THE EUROPEAN COUNCIL
MR. THORBJORN JAGLAND
GENERAL CHAIRMAN OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE
Dear Mr. President,
Dear Mrs. Chairman of the NA,
Dear Mr. Prime minister,
Dear Mr.’s Chairmen of the Parliament Groups of Political Party “GERB”, “RB” and Political Party “ABV”,
With the following letter, we, the BULGARIAN WOMEN AND MOTHERS, which feel deeply appalled and affected by the displays of racism from the tribune of the Bulgarian National Assembly against the Roma community during these last months, turn to You with a wish that you never let the Constitution and laws of the Republic of Bulgaria regarding human dignity be trampled on ever again!
We feel defiled by the range of speeches from Bulgarian deputies, which, whilst using the highest tribune in the Republic of Bulgaria, continuously spew hate speech regarding Bulgarian citizens of Roma origins without being disturbed.
Do you, ladies and gentlemen, find qualifications regarding the Roma community such as “…insolent, overweening, enraged anthropoids…”, “…women with instincts of whores…”, “…half animals…”, “…the lost link between Neanderthals and the Homo Sapiens…” normal?
If you’ve forgotten, you can find them on the Parliamentary transcripts from the 17th of December, 2014 and the 11th of March, 2015.
Understand, ladies and gentlemen, that by allowing the utterance of such words from its tribune, the Bulgarian Parliament has reached the lowest point of its fall!
We cannot forget and do not find such words normal; as citizens, worried about the democracy of the country, we demand that you also not forget and allow it!
The lack of reaction from your side worries us even more than the hostile words, spewing forth from the parliamentary tribune! Who, if not you, will stop the rampant racism in our society?!
Neither we, nor you, should silently tolerate the inculcation of notions such as “Roma criminality”, “…gypsies are under humans and parasites…” as a norm of social-political discourse in Bulgaria.
The Roma community has both centuries-old history and culture and does not deserve to be characterized only through the prism of negative social problems and processes!
We are women from the Roma ethnic group and we do not think that we fit the qualifications of these deputies, which think of themselves as patriots. On the contrary – we believe that, with our skills, our lifestyle and our value system, we are worthy citizens which not only discipline our children by teaching them many universal virtues, but also work and contribute to the development of the entire Bulgarian society. Every day, we try to protect ourselves and our children from the effects, created by the rampant hate speech against us, widespread by political and public figures through media, social networks and internet forums.
Understand that hate speech

turned the Roma from “strangers” into “dangers”!
By now, even our children, ladies and gentlemen, are perceived as unreliable and not trustworthy citizens! How, then, do you want them to feel as part of our nation? What are you doing to make them realize that Bulgaria is their home and they are as important as every other Bulgarian child?!
It’s not the miserable social assistance that creates a feeling of appurtenance – it’s the respect which puts forth the value of every Bulgarian citizen!
We believe that the lack of institutional reaction against these displays of racism will lead to even bigger division in our society.
We do not accept the fact that not one of the institutions which you represent wishes to share its thoughts on the matter officially so as to distinguish and condemn such filthy words in relation to Bulgarian citizens!
We do not want any political power to exploit the theme of hate speech in order to obtain political dividends from it. That is as harmful for us as hate speech itself!
Our expectations:
1.The institutions that you represent shall come out with an official statement, condemning racism and hate speech, preached from the parliamentary tribune.
2.The rules and punishments, described in the Rule book for the organization and activity of the National Assembly – Chapter 12, section II and III – shall be enforced strictly.
3.The creation of necessary legislative and executive measures, aimed at not allowing the spreading of hate speech through media, internet, public displays and so on, shall be undertaken.
07.04.2015г.
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