Swine Flu Panic Reigns in Roma Ghettos in Bulgaria's Burgas

Society | November 3, 2009, Tuesday // 13:28|  views

One of the four Roma ghettos in Burgas: a shantytown dotted with satellite dishes. Photo by BGNES

The Roma-populated ghettos of the Bulgarian Black Sea city of Burgas are in panic over the spreading A(H1N1) virus.

The number of people infected with swine flu in the Roma ghettos in four western quarters of Burgas is higher than the average, BGNES reported.

According to District Roma Union leader, Mitko Dokov, the people in the ghettos live in terrible conditions, which caused the dramatic spread of the swine flu virus.

“There are people who have never been to a doctor, on the one hand, because they have no money to pay, and on the other, because they are ignorant, and don’t know about basic hygiene. Our people here live like animals in shantytowns. 10-15 people would live in one room because they have nowhere else to got,” the Roma leader is quoted as saying.

The Roma ghettos in Burgas recently became a matter of contention. As most of the shantytowns are built illegally, the local authorities have ordered their demolition. However, this has led human rights and Roma minority NGOs to protest such moves.

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Tags: Roma, ghetto, Roma ghetto, Roma minority, Burgas, swine flu, A(H1N1)


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