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Slovenia's first Roma restaurant offers hope, integration

"Come hungry and with an open heart," urge flyers advertising Slovenia's first Roma restaurant. More than impressing food critics, the Romani Kafenava (Roma coffeeshop), which opened last week in the northern city of Maribor, aims to build ties with the local community and offer hope to an impoverished minority. "The point of this kind of social enterprise is to integrate socially vulnerable groups and teach them to work. And future customers should bear that in mind," Stefan Simoncic, head of the Epeka NGO, which backed the restaurant.

U.N. finds fear-mongering by pro-Russians in Ukraine

GENEVA (Reuters) - Ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine have falsely claimed to be under attack to justify Russian involvement, a report by the U.N. human rights office said on Tuesday. "Although there were some attacks against the ethnic Russian community, these were neither systematic nor widespread," said the report, which follows two visits to the country last month by Assistant Secretary General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic.

Football: Slovak star faces punishment for 'kill gays' blast

Slovak international winger Miroslav Stoch of Greek side PAOK faces disciplinary action after being accused of making threats against Olympiakos players, the Greek football federation said Friday. "Football prosecutor Konstantinos Petropoulos has brought disciplinary action against Miroslav Stoch and PAOK for acts punishable by the disciplinary provisions of the penal code," said the Greek federation. Stoch, 24, and PAOK claimed that the remarks on the player's Instagram account were the work of hackers.

Americans, Germans clash on US-EU trade standards

Americans and Germans are broadly supportive of a US-EU free-trade pact under negotiation, but differ over details, especially forging similar goods and services standards, according to a survey released Wednesday. Common regulatory standards are perhaps the most ambitious objective of the bilateral talks that began last July to create the world's biggest free-trade zone.

Americans, Germans clash on US-EU trade standards

Americans and Germans are broadly supportive of a US-EU free-trade pact under negotiation, but differ over details, especially forging similar goods and services standards, according to a survey released Wednesday. Common regulatory standards are perhaps the most ambitious objective of the bilateral talks that began last July to create the world's biggest free-trade zone.

Senior U.S. diplomat: no doubt Russians involved in Ukraine unrest

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Assistant U.S. Secretary of State Victoria Nuland said on Wednesday that Washington has no doubt that Russians were behind the takeovers of government buildings in eastern Ukraine this week. "I don't think that we have any doubt the preponderance of direct Russian involvement," Nuland, the top U.S. diplomat for Europe, said at a congressional hearing on the Ukraine crisis.

Europe failing to protect Roma from violence

European states are failing to protect their Roma communities, many of whom live in precarious conditions and are the victims of hate crimes sometimes perpetrated by police, Amnesty International warned Tuesday. In a report coinciding with International Roma Day, the rights group said many of the 10 to 12 million Roma living in Europe face "the daily threat of forced eviction, police harassment and violent attacks". "The conditions in which many Roma are forced to live are a damning indictment of years of official neglect and discrimination," the group said.

Fear and uncertainty for Crimean Tatars under Putin

In the dying days of the Soviet Union, Milyara Settarova was a young activist who took part in historic demonstrations in Moscow demanding Crimean Tatars be allowed to return home from Central Asia, where they had been deported under Stalin. Twenty-seven years later, the feisty 51-year-old is up in arms again, protesting Russia's takeover of Crimea. "I do not trust Russia," said Settarova, who teaches her native language at a university in Simferopol, the Black Sea peninsula's main city.

Crimea opposed to autonomy for Tatars

Crimea on Thursday said it was opposed to an autonomous territory for the Tatars, an ethnic minority that was against the Black Sea peninsula's recent annexation by Russia. "No, that is not possible, there can only be a cultural autonomy," Crimean deputy prime minister Roustam Temirgaliev told the Russian news agency Ria Novosti. Representatives of the Tatar community throughout Crimea held an emergency Qurultai, or congress, last week and decided to seek increased autonomy in a move widely seen as a challenge to the Kremlin.

Tatar minority seeks autonomy in Crimea

Crimea's Tatars on Saturday voted to push for self-rule in their historic homeland following its annexation by Russia, but remained torn on how to engage with the new authorities. Ethnic Tatars from all over Crimea convened in the town of Bakhchysaray for an emergency Qurultai, or congress, to decide on the fate of the Muslim community of about 300,000 people on the Black Sea peninsula. "There comes a moment in the life of every people when a choice must be made that will determine its future," said Tatar leader Refat Chubarov.
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