Statement by Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism on Romani Genocide Remembrance Day


August 2, 2018 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism, today issued the following statement:

“On this Romani Genocide Remembrance Day, we honour the memory of over 500,000 Romani who were persecuted and murdered by the Nazis and their collaborators in Europe. This genocide and the unspeakable violence inflicted on the Romani people are not widely known by the public, making them the ignored victims of World War II.

“We also recognize that Romani communities in many countries around the world have historically been—and continue to be—marginalized in all areas of life, including employment, housing, education and health care. Roma women, especially, still face significant discrimination and social exclusion.

“Canada acknowledges the tragic history of the Romani genocide survivors here at home. By officially recognizing this genocide, we recognize the Romani peoples’ shared history as victims and survivors of Nazi atrocities along with the Jewish people in the Holocaust.

“By recognizing the Romani genocide, also known as the Porajmos and Samudaripen, Canada seeks to strengthen its relationships with domestic and international partners to continue defending human rights, condemning discrimination and promoting inclusion, diversity and respect for all.

“Canada is committed to continued engagement within the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance [IHRA] to combat antisemitism and other forms of bigotry and to promote greater awareness of the Romani genocide through the IHRA’s Committee on the Roma Genocide.”


Adam Austen
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Simon Ross
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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