Romania Commemorates Deaths of Thousands of Roma in Holocaust

Romania's foreign ministry said younger generations should know about 'this tragic episode in European history'

People attend a commemoration marking the extermination of thousands of Gypsies at a Nazi concentration camp, in Bucharest, Romania, Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017.
Vadim Ghirda/AP

Romania has commemorated the deaths of thousands of Roma killed at a Nazi concentration camp.

Romania's foreign ministry on Wednesday said young generations should be educated about "this tragic episode in European history," referring to August 2, 1944 when about 3,000 Roma were taken to gas chambers at Auschwitz and exterminated.

The Elie Wiesel Institute for the Study of the Holocaust in Romania says 50,000 Roma were deported to Trans-Dniester in the Soviet Union and 11,000 died. An exhibition opened Wednesday to commemorate the deaths.

The ministry said Roma survivors from Trans-Dniester should benefit from "decent social conditions," urging government institutes and civic groups to work together to "eliminate... discrimination and incitement to ethnic or racial hatred."

Romania has more than 1 million Roma. Many are poor and face prejudice.