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Helsinki Commission to Hold Briefing on the Sterilization Investigation in the Czech Republic

WASHINGTON – During the 1970s and 1980s, the Czechoslovak Government pursued a policy aimed at reducing the birthrate of Roma, including by targeting some Romani women for sterilization.  Although it was generally assumed that the practice of sterilizing Romani women without their consent had stopped after the fall of communism, allegations that this practice had not definitively ended persisted throughout the 1990s, in both the Czech Republic and Slovakia.  On December 23, 2005, the Czech Public Defender of Rights issued a report confirming that some women had been sterilized without informed consent.  The Czech Government has not yet acted on the Public Defender’s recommendations. 

In order to examine this issue more fully, the Helsinki Commission will hold a briefing on the state of the investigation into sterilization in the Czech Republic.         

“The Sterilization Investigation in the Czech Republic”

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

2255 Rayburn House Office Building

In particular, the briefing will address:

The investigations into sterilization practices in the Czech Republic;

The impact of sterilizations without informed consent on victims; and

Recommendations for further action.     

Witness:

Gwendolyn Albert, Director, League of Human Rights (Prague)

Media contact

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