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APPEAL TO MANUEL BARROSO, PRESIDENT OF THE COMMISSION OF THE EUROPEAN UNION


We, the undersigned, are concerned with the case of Gratian Gruia, a four year old Romanian child abandoned in Italy by his mother and found begging in terrible conditions by the Roman police. Gratian was entrusted to the care of a family, but then taken away by order of a court in Rome (an Italian special tribunal for juveniles) to be sent back to Romania where the courts entrusted him to his relatives that, in Italy, had been deprived of their parental rights for the ill-treatment of the child.  

Being aware of the international treaties on the rights of the child that stipulate that “In all actions concerning children, whether undertaken by public or private social welfare institutions, courts of law, administrative authorities or legislative bodies, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration”, we believe that in this case this treaty, or any article of it, was not in fact respected.  

The agreement signed between Italy and Romania in June 2008 and its implementing directive issued by the Italian Internal Affairs Ministry demonstrate that both States are intent on the assisted repatriation of all non-accompanied minors found on the territory of the Italian Republic, without distinction and without taking into account, at least, the child’s age, the length of his/her stay in Italy and therefore any possible positive integration into Italian society the child may already have achieved, the unwillingness to return s/he may have expressed, or of the existence in Romania of a family suitable to receive and look after him/her.  

This last point is undeniably significant when one considers that the Romanian welfare system for minors is still a work in progress and that the current legislation doesn’t allow adoption. This undeniably discriminates against children that, not having a suitable family to welcome them, are denied the opportunity of finding one that they would have in Italy.  

Having regard to the above,  

We request that Gratian Gruia’s case and the Italo-Romanian Accord be referred to the Court of Justice of the European communities with the aim of having struck down any measures that are harmful, or may be harmful to Gratian’s best interests and those of any other child that has been or will be repatriated, so that children will not be exposed to situations which can put in jeopardy their physical and mental well-being and their fundamental rights. We ask that children be placed in an environment which is conducive to a serene childhood and the balanced and harmonious development of their personalities, as enshrined in all the conventions on the rights of the child signed by the Italian State and the Romanian State.    


Click here to sign the appeal.  

Signatures:


Avv. Prof. Giuseppe Pisauro
Erri De Luca scrittore
Giampiero Mughini scrittore
Angiolo Marroni garante per i diritti dei detenuti Regione Lazio
Carmen Bertolazzi giornalista
Francesco Patierno regista
Ass. Ora D’Aria
Ass. PID Pronto Intervento Disagio
On. Marialuisa Gnecchi (PD)
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On. Edmondo Cirielli (PDL)
Sen. Antonino Randazzo (PD)
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On. Luciana Pedoto (PD)
On. Lucia Codurelli (PD)
On. Paolo Corsini (PD)
On. Giuseppe Berretta (PD)
On. Mario Tullo (PD)
On. Pietro Tidei (PD)
On. Amalia Schirru (PD)
On. Giuseppe Giuletti (IdV)
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On. Paola Goisis (Lega Nord)
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On. Donata Lenzi (PD)
On. Massimo Vannucci (PD)
On. Caterina Pes (PD)
On. Antonio Buonfiglio (PDL)
On. Giuseppina Servodio (PD)
Sen. Salvo Fleres (PDL)  
Sen. Gianpiero D’Alia (UDC-SVP-Aut)
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Sen. Enrico Musso (PDL)
Sen. Roberto Di Giovan Paolo (PD)
On. Anna Paola Concia (PD)
On. Luisa Capitanio Santolini (UDC)
On. Barbara Saltamartini (PDL)

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