Around 40-50 local Roma families have emigrated from the Hungarian city of Miskolc to Canada over the previous months, community leader Mihály Dancs has claimed, adding that the number may multiply soon. Roma families are planning to leave Hungary not only from in and around Miskolc but also more distant areas, he claims.
In the meanwhile, officials from Canada’s immigration authority and representatives of the Canadian embassy in Budapest are in Miskolc to gather information on the situation. The Canadians met the head of the local Roma self-government and also town councillors, Mr. Dancs said.
Local Roma are leaving the city for Canada primarily from a slum area about to be torn down by municipal authorities, he said, adding that people living there have been made “practically homeless” by authorities. Hungary’s third-largest city decided last year to tear down the city’s slum neighbourhoods, considered hotbeds of crime, last year. After the slum clearance, the area from where Roma are now fleeing will give way to the city’s redeveloped football stadium. Speaking earlier, Miskolc mayor Ákos Kriza said that football fans “in their tens of thousands cannot be expected to pass by slum areas” on their way to the games.
photo: index.hu/Bálint Hirling