The European Parliament elections are approaching: Will Roma candidates succeed?

Cluj-Napoca, 11/01/2014 - It is not something new for a Roma origin person to run candidature in European Parliament elections and be a MEP, Juan de Dios Ramírez Heredia was the first Roma ever to serve as a Member of the European Parliament, his example was followed also by Lívia Járóka or Viktória Mohácsi. As the 2014 European Parliament elections are approaching the reports about the increasing number of Roma origins candidates for MEP are increasing.

“Is time to stop discrimination against Roma, is time for Roma political participation at the European level” says Stefan Rostas, president of l'Agence européenne pour les Roms (AER) who announced that Roma will present eight candidates in next year's European Parliament elections. AER will have candidates from France, Belgium Germany and Romania, the European country with the largest Roma population.

Last month in December, Dorin Cioaba (Romania) stated that he is planning to open up a Roma political party and candidate for the EP elections. However, he is not planning to candidates in Romania, the country where he is from, but “in another European country in which Roma people are more united”. 

Elections for the European Parliament will be held in all member states of the European Union (EU) between 22 and 25 May 2014, as decided unanimously by a decision the Council of the European Union. It will be the eighth Europe-wide election to the European Parliament since the first direct elections in 1979. The official run-up to the 2014 European elections started on 10 September, when the European Parliament launched its awareness and information campaign. Starting from January, most of the parties will adopt their list of candidates, campaign team, strategy for the European elections and national political objectives. The proper election campaign will start in February, the complete cycle of the lections ending up with the first plenary meeting of the newly elected MEPs.