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Fanny Ardant joins Council of Europe for summer spotlight on Roma
06-06-2010 - Press release

Fanny Ardant with Bernard Girardeau in Ridicule French actress Fanny Ardant will join forces with the Council of Europe later this month at the start of a summer campaign highlighting Roma concerns.

The Council of Europe sees its partnership with Fanny Ardant, 61, as providing a “public face” for its Dosta! Campaign, which aims to combat the anti-gypsyism and social exclusion which affects the region’s 10 to 12 million-strong Roma community.

“Fanny Ardant’s high profile and her commitment to human rights are important assets in our efforts to change opinions and attitudes,” said a spokesman.

“Discrimination is often based on ignorance. Ms Ardant’s endorsement of the Dosta! Campaign will make the public more aware of Roma lifestyles, culture and language.”

Ms Ardant has starred in more than 50 films. These include François Truffaut’s ‘La Femme d’à Côté’ (The Woman Next Door), ‘Chimeras Absentes,’ and the Franco Zeffirelli production ‘Callas Forever,’ in which she portrayed the opera singer Maria Callas.

On 7 June, Ms Ardant joins the Council of Europe’s Deputy Secretary General Maud de Boer Buquicchio, for the launch of the Dosta! Campaign in Rome. She will address the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly on 22 June.

The Italian launch of the Dosta! Campaign is well-timed according to Donatella De Vito, a sociologist with the charity Casa Della Carità, which helps Roma in Milan.

“I hope this will encourage the media to take a deeper interest in this subject,” she said.

“In Italy, there is huge ignorance about Roma. The situation is getting worse and worse.”

Other highlights of the summer calendar include a Roma conference in Skopje, in “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia,” attended by government representatives from the Balkans region and an exhibition on Roma migrants in Lyon, France.

A public hearing in Strasbourg on 21 June will focus on the treatment of Roma and Sinti communities by the Italian authorities.

A complaint brought before the European Committee of Social Rights by the Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE) alleges that Italy is in breach of its responsibilities under the terms of the revised European Social Charter.

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