16 May – International Romani Resistance Day

Historical background

The 16th of May is celebrated worldwide as the International Romani Resistance Day.

What happened that day and why it’s important for us to remember that date, – read more.

On the 16th of May, 1944, at the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, “Gipsy camp” prisoners tried to revolt in response to an attempt by the SS to eliminate Sector B-IIEthey did not go to the traditional roll call, but instead barricaded themselves in their barracks, armed themselves with what they could and began to resist.

But later the Nazis brutally revenged on the rebels. Firstly, all B-IIE prisoners were put on starvation rations. Secondly, some prisoners were transferred to Auschwitz-I, while others were transferred to Buchenwald, Flossenbürg and Ravensbrück. About 3,000 Roma remained in the “gypsy camp” and they were killed by the Nazis in gas chambers on the 2nd of August, 1944.

The historical authenticity of this episode is the subject of scientific debate, but it has become an extremely powerful consolidating element in the growth of Roma self-awareness and solidarity, forming a sense of subjectivity as part of the general historical process.

“Dikh he na bister” (Look and don’t forget) – so say the Roma. So let’s not forget the tragedy of the Roma people, so as not to be forgotten.

Flash mob for the Romani Resistance Day

Our team invited the participants of the Roma Youth Forum, which took place in 2018 in Lviv, to join the flash mob on the occasion of the International Romani Resistance Day.

Participation in such events provides an opportunity to spread knowledge about the little-known but very important events of the Second World War and to show the unity of Roma activists and the willingness to join forces to defend their rights and combat various forms of discrimination.

To join the participation, it was enough to take a photo with a thematic frame and post a photo on social networks with the appropriate hashtags: #RomaGenocide , #2ndAugust , #RomaHolocaust ,  #RomaniResistance , #16May.