UK & World News
Ireland: Blonde Roma Girl Taken Into Care
A blonde girl thought to be aged around seven and living with a Roma family in the Irish Republic has been taken into care, Sky sources have revealed.
Police are understood to have swooped on the family after a tip-off from a member of the public.
The girl, who has blue eyes, was taken into care after officers were called to a house in the Dublin suburb of Tallaght on Monday afternoon.
Concerns were raised after the member of the public saw the blonde girl being looked after by the Roma family.
Sky sources said the parents were unable to prove the identity of the girl.
It follows the taking into care of a four-year-old blonde girl called Maria and the arrest of a Roma couple in Greece last week.
The youngster taken from the family in Dublin is now being cared for by Ireland's Health Services Executive.
Sky News has been told the couple who were looking after the girl are being questioned by police in Dublin, however there have been no arrests.
Ireland's Sunday World newspaper said the couple had been asked by the police to produce a birth certificate, but they initially could not find one.
The parents, according to the paper, then claimed the girl was born at Dublin's Coombe hospital in April 2006, but enquiries with the hospital resulted in no record being found of the girl being born in the hospital at that time.
After two hours in the house, the parents eventually found a birth certificate, but the police were not satisfied that it matched the girl.
The youngster is said to be physically well and her siblings were not taken in to care.
The girl could be kept in care for up to eight days under an emergency order applied for by the Health Service Executive (HSE).
Pavee Point, a rights groups that works on behalf of Irish travellers and the Roma community, called for the girl's case to be resolved swiftly.
"Pavee Point are concerned about witch-hunts against a vulnerable community and old stereotypes of an entire community being propagated in the media coverage of this development," a spokesman said.
"Actions by the state need to be evidence-based and due process needs to be accorded to all communities living in Ireland.
"There is a real danger that precipitative action, undertaken on the basis of appearance, can create the conditions for an increase in racism and discrimination against the Roma community living here."
Pavee Point said Roma children are grossly over-represented in state care institutions in Europe, and the main underlying reasons are poverty and discrimination.