Romani people in North Macedonia
According to the last census from 2002, there were 53,879 people counted as Romani , the majority are Muslim Romani people in what is now North Macedonia, or 2.66% of the population. Another 3,843 people have been counted as "Egyptians" (0.2%).
|53,879 (2002 census))|
|(Balkan Romani) and Macedonian|
|Sunni Islam 75%, Christianity 25% |
The municipality of Šuto Orizari is the only municipality in the world with a Muslim Romani people majority and the only municipality where Balkan Romani is an official language alongside Macedonian. The mayor of the municipality, Kurto Dudush, is an ethnic Roma.
North Macedonia is the region's leader in respecting the rights of the Romani people. It is the first country in the region with a minister of Romani ethnicity and also has many Romani in high government positions. However, there is still a lot to be done concerning the education and integration of the Romani.
The linguistic evidence has indisputably shown that roots of Romani language lie in India: the language has grammatical characteristics of Indian languages and shares with them a big part of the basic lexicon, for example, body parts or daily routines.
Genetic findings in 2012 suggest the Romani originated in northwestern India and migrated as a group. According to a genetic study in 2012, the ancestors of present scheduled tribes and scheduled caste populations of northern India, traditionally referred to collectively as the Ḍoma, are the likely ancestral populations of the modern European Roma.
In February 2016, during the International Roma Conference, the Indian Minister of External Affairs stated that the people of the Roma community were children of India. The conference ended with a recommendation to the Government of India to recognize the Roma community spread across 30 countries as a part of the Indian diaspora.
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