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Seven convicted of incitement against Roma

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Seven convicted of incitement against Roma
The Roma community had been given a camping place near Bischofshofen. File photo: APA
11:39 CEST+02:00
Seven men have received probationary sentences of between three and four months, after making abusive comments on Facebook and calling for a “final solution” for a Roma community in Bischofshofen, Salzburg.

The men started making the threats after a fight occurred last September between a group of teenagers from the Pongau region and around 200 Roma people who were legally camped near to a ski jumping site. Police had difficulty bringing the situation under control. 

Only one of the seven men was actually present at the fight.

They were charged with trying to incite hate crimes after they made posts on a Facebook site, that had 2,442 members, calling for Molotov cocktails to be thrown into the Roma camp and one stated that “the dirty rabble should be eradicated”.

One of the men said that what was needed was “a final solution”, referring to Nazi Germany’s plan to kill Europe’s Jewish population.

The prosecution said that the men had deliberately attempted to incite violence against the Roma people, in an “inhumane and hurtful way”.

The comments were posted on a Facebook group called Rennleitung Pongau, that was set up to warn its members of police traffic controls.

The accused said that they had posted the comments because they wanted “politicians and police to do something,” about the conflict between the Roma community and the locals.

The men are between 18 and 39-years-old and include craftsmen, a student, and a wholesale merchant.

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