FC Bayern Herbert Hainer

Herbert Hainer: Give people a voice

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The City of Munich held a memorial service on Monday to remember the victims of the deportation of the Sinti and Roma by the National Socialists 80 years ago. FC Bayern was represented by president Herbert Hainer, who read from eyewitness accounts alongside Dr. Mirjam Zadoff, director of the Nazi Documentation Centre Munich, and director Charlotte Link in the ballroom of the Old City Hall in the evening. "It’s important that we remember the murdered women, men and children, and give these people a voice," Hainer said. "Antigypsyism is a specific form of racism, and we at FC Bayern are committed to ensuring that discrimination has no room to manoeuvre in our society."

Herbert Hainer FC Bayern
FC Bayern president Herbert Hainer in conversation with Romani Rose, head of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma.

In the afternoon, the names of the 141 murdered Sinti and Roma of Munich were read out at the Square of the Victims of National Socialism, and they were also projected onto the facade of the Nazi Documentation Centre in the evening hours. To this day, the total number of victims cannot be determined exactly; the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma assumes a total of 500,000 people lost their lives as a result of the murderous actions and cruel conditions in the concentration camps. After the end of the war, discrimination and criminalisation of the few survivors continued in authorities, schools and institutions. For a long time, they received no recognition as victims and no compensation. To this day, members of the minority are confronted with numerous prejudices.

Deputy mayor Katrin Habenschaden and Dr. Mehmet Daimagüler, Federal Government Commissioner against Antigypsyism, as well as Romani Rose, head of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma, gave welcoming speeches in the festival hall. Minister of State Claudi Roth spoke to the 120 invited guests in a video message, before Hainer and other representatives from politics, culture, business and sports quoted from contemporary witness documents. Unfortunately, one cannot always be proud of Munich, Habenschaden remarked, referring to the deportations and the treatment of the Sinti and Roma. Rose recalled that Bavaria has always been a home for this minority and still is today. "For me, Sinto means being a persecuted German," Hugo Höllenreiner quoted from a contemporary witness document. At the end, Rose thanked Hainer for FC Bayern's involvement in the event: "Sport unites people."

Photos: T. Hauzenberger; Cultural Department of the City of Munich.

FC Bayern is committed to combating exclusion of all kinds with its Reds against Racism initiative: 

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